Catholic cemeteries offer way to remember babies lost due to premature birth
KIOWA. The Respect Life Apostolate seeks to inform us how to understand, value, and become engaged in the myriad of the Church’s pro-life activities. These activities support the God-given dignity of every person, which naturally leads to protecting the gift of every person’s life.
All human life is sacred. This spans all human life from the womb to the tomb (i.e., from the beginning of life at human conception until one’s natural death).
Many people may not be aware that Catholic cemeteries typically have dedicated sections reserved for the burial of fetal remains. In some cemeteries, it is called the Holy Innocents Section and is created solely to provide a dignified place of remembrance and prayer to all families that have experienced the tragic loss of a child before its full-term birth. It offers an opportunity for bereaved families to memorialize a beloved child and a very special place for prayer and reflection.
In this regard, on October 27, 2016, Bishop Michael Sheridan promulgated a Policy for the Burial of Fetal Remains within the Diocese of Colorado Springs. This policy encourages fetal remains (i.e., miscarriages, stillborns, etc.) be given a proper, dignified and reverent burial. With this policy in mind, our diocesan Catholic cemeteries typically offer burial options for fetal remains.
For example, the Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery (dba: Our Lady of the Visitation Catholic Church) in Kiowa, Colorado, has a section called Holy Innocents set aside for the interment or inurnment burial of fetal remains.
Parents in this devastating situation are asked to please contact their local parish priest to begin the funeral and/or burial process within the Church.