There are three distinct groups that must be considered in the exercise of the Corporal Work of Mercy known as the Burial of the Dead. Those who are buried, entombed, or inurned in our cemeteries are the first group. The Rules and Regulations are written for their protection. These individuals are entitled, even after they have died, to respectful burial, to the care and maintenance of their interment spaces, to a holy and beautiful environment of the Catholic cemetery, in recognition of our belief that cemeteries are “resting places” as we await as a community of faith for the final resurrection.
The second group consists of the survivors and visitors to Catholic Cemeteries . Among this group would be those who have purchased spaces for future use, those who have loved ones or friends buried in one or more of our cemeteries, those who utilize our cemeteries as places for prayer and meditation, or those who come to our cemeteries to render services either to families or cemetery management and operations.
The third group that must be considered includes the Catholic Church itself, its rituals, disciplines and procedures, cemetery management and all cemetery support staff who are charged not only with the application of the Church’s directives, but who also must interact with families requiring our services, or visitors and others who come to the cemeteries to render services either on behalf of families or cemetery management.
These Rules and Regulations are designed to chart a course of mutual cooperation and protection for all of these groups and the individuals within them. They are intended to help sanctify the living memories of those buried within the cemeteries and to create an environment within the cemeteries that awakens faith and brings consolation. The enforcement of the rules will assist in protecting the cemeteries, creating and preserving their beauty, and ensuring that the interests of all concerned parties are equally addressed.
Rules and Regulations play an important part in the beautification and preservation of the sacred resting place of the faithful departed. They are intended not as restraining, but rather as defining an orderly plan of operation, care and permanent maintenance.
A complete copy of current Rules and Regulations is available for inspection at the Cemetery Office or by downloading the following PDF document called the General Rules and Regulations Document or the Monument Rules and Regulations . (These documents are found here.) Please refer to the Cemetery Office for clarification of these Rules and Regulations or for further information concerning cemetery.
For the mutual protection of Certificate holders and the Cemeteries and all who visit our cemeteries, the following General Rules and Regulations have been adopted by Catholic Cemeteries of Rockville Centre Diocese in the State of New York, as the rules and regulations of Catholic Cemeteries, which are owned and operated by Catholic Cemeteries of the Diocese of Rockville Centre.
All Certificate holders, visitors, funeral directors, monument dealers and any persons or contractors, companies, etc. performing related or other work within these cemeteries, and all graves, plots, crypts and niches sold, shall be subject to these rules and regulations, and subject further to such other rules, regulations, amendments or alterations as shall be adopted by Catholic Cemeteries of Rockville Centre Diocese from time to time. References to these rules and regulations in the Certificate of the Right of Burial (Certificate) shall have the same force and effect as if set forth in full therein.
General Statements Concerning the Planting and Decorating and other Rules and Regulations at our Cemeteries
All of us in Catholic cemetery ministry are deeply saddened when a bereaved family experiences pain and disappointment rather than comfort and consolation at a cemetery. We can well appreciate each visitor’s feelings and comments regarding the problems with the enforcement of these Rules and Regulations .
Many families wish to decorate their loved one’s burial place as an _expression of their love and caring. The cemetery has to balance these desires with more practical concerns of appearance and upkeep. While not everyone will agree with all the rules, we ask that everyone accept them as contributing to our common goal - a well-kept and safe cemetery.
Cemetery regulations are a necessity to provide order, neatness and efficiency in operations. Without them the appearance of the Cemetery would greatly suffer. We have made attempts to inform Certificate holders and visitors of these rules with posted notices. Printed copies of our rules and regulations have been distributed with each Certificate of Right of Burial (cemetery certificate) or grave/crypt/niche contract and additional copies are available upon request to the cemetery office. Each of these acts serves to alert visitors of these Rules and Regulations .
Unfortunately regulations are not always to everyone’s taste, but most cemeteries have similar regulations which are the result of many years experience in trying to assist families in their grief, in creating an appearance of beauty and good order and in allowing the cemetery staff to perform their work efficiently.
“When Infractions and Corrections occur No notice is given and no compensation is permitted.”
The cemetery reserves the right to remove decorations that have deteriorated, as well as decorations that do not meet the guidelines in order to maintain the beauty, dignity, and safety of the cemetery grounds including gravesites, shrines, chapel and mausoleum areas.
The cemetery cannot be responsible for decorations that are removed. Damage resulting from improper decorations cannot be covered for reimbursement nor can the cemetery assume responsibility for decorations disappearance. Rectification of any damage shall be the grave/crypt/niche original owner or the heirs of the grave/crypt/niche original owner.
Decorations should not be on the ground outside specified designated planting and decorating areas for the gravesites and crypts because they obstruct access to adjacent lots or crypts and present a safety hazard to staff, equipment and other visitors.
Management reserves the right to change, modify, or rescind the rules and regulations as it seems fit and deems necessary.
The general beauty and maintenance of the cemetery grounds (gravesites and the mausoleum areas) naturally suffers to the extent that time and labor is consumed in correcting infractions of the rules. If infractions are permitted or overlooked, it would tend to result in increased infractions.
The Cemetery staff does dispose of decorations placed at the gravesite, crypt or niche that are in violation of the published rules. The cemetery staff is often instructed to take these materials away from public view to discourage others from placing similar items at the grave, crypt or niche.
Why the cemetery has rules?
Our goal is to:
Foster cooperation between the cemetery and those who visit here.
Insure the continuation of the general plan set forth for the cemetery grounds.
Design rules that protect visitors and workers from harm.
The cemetery’s management is committed that all our Cemeteries are well maintained and image the Church’s respect for the dignity of each individual human person.
Rules and Regulations play a most important part in the beautification and preservation of the sacred resting-place of the faithful departed. They are intended not as restraining, but rather as defining an orderly plan of operation, care and permanent maintenance.
The placement of cemetery tributes, whether floral or of some other type, is strictly regulated for the common good of all gravesites, crypts, and niches. No placed tribute, whether floral or otherwise is considered permanent to the site.
The cemetery makes every effort to enforce rules and regulations uniformly and with compassion .
We acknowledge and regret instances that appear contrary to these efforts.
In compiling the regulations and in considering revisions, we try to strike a balance between the natural desire of family members to decorate individual gravesites, crypts, niches, and the overriding obligation to maintain the appearance of the cemetery with the resources at our disposal.
It is always difficult to make rules and regulations which a wide and diverse group of persons will agree on. Our Cemetery’s rules are the standard regulations of the vast majority of cemeteries. The goal of cemetery planting and decorating regulations is to make the cemetery grounds neat and clean with an atmosphere of simplicity and elegance. These regulations also ensure that the cemetery grounds are a safe place for both visitors and workers. While we certainly appreciate and commend one’s love of devotional objects of great personal sentiment and we sincerely trust all will understand the necessity of complying with the regulations.
Catholic cemeteries image the care of the Church for her people, which does not cease when death occurs. Those who have gone before us into the Communion of Saints lie in the consecrated space of the Catholic Cemetery; they are family, friends, fellow parishioners, and co-laborers, all believers in Jesus Christ, Eternal Life and the Kingdom of God. Whether summer or winter, whether in rain, snow or sunshine, those who work the grounds must keep these facilities in a condition that makes them both accessible and welcoming. Catholic cemeteries are to be places of remembrance and hope, prayer and comfort; they must be facilities that reflect the Church’s theology about dignity of each human person, whether that person is alive or in the tomb awaiting the day of final judgment.
Comments and suggestions are always welcomed. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this or other matters, feel free to contact the cemetery office