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“Straight Answers to Cremation Questions” will be the topic of a seminar presented by Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo and Mount Calvary Cemetery on Wednesday, Apr. 9, at 6:30 p.m., at Pine Lawn Chapel, 2951 Harlem Rd., Cheektowaga.

“With more and more families selecting cremation, this is a good time to provide insight into cremation options,” said Carmen Colao, diocesan director of Catholic Cemeteries.

“This type of forum also helps eliminate confusion regarding Church teaching about cremation,” Colao said.  “While the Church prefers burial or entombment of the body, cremation is permitted.  It is also important for families to know that the body of the deceased should be present at the Funeral Mass, prior to cremation, and that it is the Church’s preference that the cremated remains receive a proper burial, preferably in a Catholic Cemetery.”          
Cremated remains: treat them with respect
Friday, March 21, 2014 by Carmen Colao

St. Peter Columbarium at Mount Olivet CemeteryI ran across an article in our local newspaper about a family that experienced a burglary in their home. The burglars stole electronics and a small music box. Inside the box were the cremated remains of the family’s five month old son. The mother had laid him down for a nap with his twin brother and he never woke up. Traumatized and unwilling to let go, the family placed his cremated remains in the music box and kept it in their home.

Now, having to relive the anguish all over again, the family was pleading with the burglars to return the music box which they said had no monetary value. The family stated they were willing to make a deal. If the cremated remains of their son were returned to any local fire station, the burglars could keep the rest of the stolen items.   read more...
Bishop Malone's Catholic Cemeteries message
Thursday, March 06, 2014 by Kevin Keenan

Thank a Vet!Honorably discharged veterans living in Niagara County are now eligible for discounts at the Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo.

Veterans who enroll in the program through the Niagara County Clerk’s office are eligible for a 20 percent discount on all services at any of the Catholic Cemeteries, including Assumption (Grand Island), Gate of Heaven (Lewiston), Holy Cross (Lackawanna), Holy Sepulchre (Cheektowaga), Mount Olivet (Kenmore) and Queen of Heaven (Lockport).

“By participating in this worthwhile program, we are able to honor the selfless service of these brave men and women,” said Carmen Colao, diocesan director of Catholic Cemeteries.  “We are proud to recognize the countless sacrifices they have made on behalf of freedom.” read more...
"We need to make a difference"
Monday, February 10, 2014 by Kevin Keenan

Msgr. Francis Weldgen (left), Carmen Colao (center) and Joseph Lombardo (right) at the Catholic Cemeteries in-service at St. Andrew Parish in Kenmore.

Employees of Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo met for an in-service Feb.6-7 at St. Andrew Parish in Kenmore, discussing many of the aspects of their ministry.

Msgr. Francis Weldgen, a board member since 1986, led the employees in prayer and then addressed burying the dead as one of the Corporal Works of Mercy.  "We  work for the Church," he said, "we need to make a difference.  We need to treat people with ultimate kindness." read more...
Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo plan Christmas Masses
Tuesday, December 10, 2013 by Kevin Keenan

Chapel at Mount Olivet CemeteryA tradition dating back to the 1980s, the celebration of special Christmas Masses, will continue at four Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo on Thursday, Dec. 26, at 5:30 p.m.

Masses will be celebrated at Resurrection Chapel Mausoleum in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Kenmore, with Msgr. Francis G. Weldgen presiding.  He is a retired priest of the Diocese of Buffalo and member of the Catholic Cemeteries board.  Msgr. Thomas J. Moran, pastor of St. Bernard Parish (Youngstown), will be the celebrant at All Saints Chapel Mausoleum in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, in Lewiston, while Msgr. William Gallagher, retired priest of the diocese, will celebrate at Holy Cross Chapel Mausoleum in Holy Cross Cemetery, Lackawanna.   Father Paul Bossi, pastor of Blessed Sacrament Parish (Buffalo), will celebrate at St. Francis of Assisi Chapel Mausoleum in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Cheektowaga. read more...
Happy Holidays: Support groups ease a lonely season
Wednesday, October 30, 2013 by Kaitlin Lindahl, Reporter, Bee Group Newspapers

Nancy WeilIt’s supposed to be the happiest time of the year. Twinkling lights create a magical aura. The radio airs happy, festive songs. Smiles and pleasantries are abundant. But for those missing a loved one, the extra layers of cheer can seem hollow, and the holiday season can be an incredibly lonely stretch of days.

“Holidays are really the worst time,” said Richard Bzibziak. “There are a lot of memories.” Bzibziak is one of several members of grief support groups brought together by Nancy Weil, director of grief support for Mount Calvary Cemetery and Catholic Cemeteries. read more...
Cemetery Sunday is Nov. 2
Tuesday, October 29, 2013 by Kevin Keenan
Holy Cross CemeteryCatholic Cemeteries of Buffalo will take part in the nationwide observance of Cemetery Sunday on Nov. 3.

“This is an opportunity for a day of prayer and remembrance, for people to visit one of our most sacred places, a Catholic cemetery,” said Carmen Colao, diocesan director of Catholic Cemeteries.  “Our cemeteries are where the bonds between the living and the dead are most evident.  Cemetery Sunday also is a time when we can reflect on our own mortality and remind us that our spiritual life is eternal.” read more...
New radio campaign promotes October open houses
Monday, September 30, 2013 by Kevin Keenan

Mass at Mount Olivet CemeteryCatholic Cemeteries of Buffalo has launched a radio advertising campaign promoting Open Houses during the month of October.

Holy Sepulchre Cemetery (Cheektowaga) Open House:  Saturday, Oct. 5, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., with 100th anniversary Mass at 10 a.m.

Queen of Heaven Cemetery (Lockport) Open House:  Saturday, Oct. 19, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Mount Olivet Cemetery (Kenmore) Open House:  Saturday, Oct. 26, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with monthly Mass at 9 a.m.

You can listen to the radio spots by clicking on read more ... below.

Revelations Newsletter - Fall 2013 Issue
Tuesday, September 17, 2013 by Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo

Revelations, the official newsletter of Catholic Cemeteries, Diocese of Buffalo, is now available.  Download the 2013 issue.

Revelations
Holy Sepulchre Cemetery marks century of service
Monday, September 09, 2013 by Kevin Keenan

 Jim VitthuhnFor generations, Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Cheektowaga has silently and reverently honored the lives of the more than 20,000 people interred there.  The cemetery will celebrate its 100th anniversary on Saturday, Oct. 5, with a special 10 a.m. Mass celebrated by Msgr. David Slubecky, vicar general and moderator of the curia of the Diocese of Buffalo, and president of the board of Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo.

Located on Harlem Road between the Kensington Expressway and Genesee Street, the 33 acres of sacred space were consecrated on Oct. 5, 1913, by Bishop Charles Colton, fourth bishop of Buffalo.  It is one of six diocesan cemeteries operated by Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo.


Groundbreaking for new mausoleum chapelGroundbreaking ceremonies were held on June 27, 2013 for the new St. Anthony Chapel Mausoleum at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 3063 Harlem Road, Cheektowaga. 

The all interior addition to the existing mausoleum will contain 385 crypt spaces for caskets and 304 niche spaces for cremated remains.Msgr. David Slubecky, board chair of the Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo and Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia for the Diocese of Buffalo, blessed the space, offered a prayer and deliver remarks. read more...
Holy Sepulchre Cemetery turns 100
Tuesday, June 18, 2013 by Catholic Cemeteries Communications

St. Francis of Assisi MausoleumThe aptly named Holy Sepulchre Cemetery on Harlem Road in Cheektowaga will celebrate its 100th anniversary this October 5, 2013. The original Holy Sepulchre refers to the tomb in which the Body of Jesus was laid after His death upon the Cross. The Evangelists tell us that it was Joseph of Arimathea's own tomb which he had hewn out of a rock near the site of the Crucifixion. Today, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, a basilica, stands over the site of the resurrection of Jesus within the walled Old City of Jerusalem.

Catholic Cemeteries: Business or ministry?
Tuesday, June 11, 2013 by Carmen Colao, Director, Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo

Carmen ColaoWhat makes Catholic cemeteries different from their non-Catholic counterparts? What makes them unique?

Catholic cemeteries serve the Church in ways that are distinctly Catholic.

This distinctiveness can be seen in the attitudes and actions of the people in the organization – whether or not they share the Catholic faith. These distinctions make a Catholic cemetery recognizable as Catholic. read more...
We can't delete them from our lives
Friday, June 07, 2013 by Nancy Weil, Director of Grief Support

Nancy WeilGoing through my phone contacts the other day, I spotted the name and phone number of a dear friend of mine. I smiled at the thought of her and imagined her reassuring voice that greeted me whenever I called and the way she was so interested in the mundane details of my life. How I longed to have one more conversation with her, but she died two years ago from cancer. I found the number I needed and dialed; Donna’s name still securely in my list of contacts. I will never delete her from my phone, my email contacts or the other places where she appears. She may no longer be available to call, but she is still very much alive in my heart. I cannot delete her from those lists any more than I can delete her from my life. read more...
Western New York Catholic Supplement
Wednesday, June 05, 2013 by Communications

Download and read the 2013 Catholic Cemeteries supplement published in the June Western New York Catholic.  Read articles about the ministry of Catholic cemeteries, the 100th anniversary of Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Cheektowaga and there's a photo gallery on the extensive services conducted in our Catholic Cemeteries.

                                                  Western New York Catholic supplement
St. Anthony Chapel Mausoleum now under construction
Tuesday, May 28, 2013 by Communications

New mausoleum under construction Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Cheektowaga will be the site of the new St. Anthony Chapel Mausoleum that is now under construction.  You can reserve now and save with pre-construction prices.

This beautiful structure will offer selections with serenity and the natural beauty of garden arrangements.  The mausoleum provides a simple, dignified and affordable alternative to inground burial.  Let us answer your questions.
  Selections may be paid for over a period of time with NO INTEREST or FINANCE CHARGES.  For more information, call at Family Service Counselor today at 716-873-6500.
Catholic Cemeteries’ parish outreach focuses on pre-planning
Thursday, February 28, 2013 by Kevin Keenan

Carmen Colao“Moving Toward Heaven” was the topic of a special Lenten program at St. Leo the Great Parish on Feb. 27, addressing pre-planning for Catholic funerals and burials in Catholic cemeteries. “Hopefully we are working that direction,” said Msgr. Robert E. Zapfel, pastor of the Amherst parish.

Carmen A. Colao (right), director of Catholic Cemeteries for the Diocese of Buffalo, and Msgr. Zapfel made presentations and answered questions from about 60 people who filled the parish chapel. read more...
Aging is for Everyone - Nancy Weil on Grief Support
Thursday, December 27, 2012 by Kevin Keenan
Cemeteries marketing director named to Network in Aging board
Wednesday, November 28, 2012 by Kevin Keenan

Chip Mussen elected
Catholic Cemetery director lays wreath at Tomb of the Unknowns
Friday, November 09, 2012 by Kevin Keenan

Carmen A. Colao, director of Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo, took part in a wreath laying ceremony at the Tom of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery on Sept. 24, 2012. At the time, Colao was president of the Catholic Cemetery Conference.  read more...
Catholic Cemetery Conference elects new board of directors
Monday, October 29, 2012 by Catholic Cemetery Conference

Dennis Fairbank, executive director of the Catholic Cemetery Conference, announced that during the CCC's 63rd annual convention in Washington, D.C., Carol K. Giambalvo, director of cemeteries for the Diocese of Rockford, was elected president, succeeded Carmen A.  Colao, director of Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo.  Colao will be immediate past president until 2014.

During the convention, Colao laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.  read more...
Bishop Grosz rededicates Ascension bell
Saturday, October 20, 2012 by Kevin Keenan

Bishop Edward M. Grosz, auxiliary bishop of Buffalo, blesses the Ascension bell at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Kenmore, on Oct. 20. Msgr. Paul J. Belzer, retired priest of the diocese, looks on. 

“This is a beautiful addition to Mount Olivet, as we remember our loved ones who have been laid to rest here,” Bishop Grosz said.  The bell was originally dedicated exactly one century ago, on Oct. 20, 1912, by Bishop Charles H. Colton, fourth bishop of Buffalo, for Ascension Parish in North Tonawanda. read more...
Catholic Cemeteries supplement, Western New York Catholic (May 2012)
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 by Western New York Catholic staff

The Western New York Catholic publishes a special supplement for the Catholic Cemeteries of Buffalo every year.

Click here for the 2012 supplement.