Return to Tradition
Christians have always been concerned about the reverent disposal of the remains of the faithful departed. Traditionally, the burial place for a church member was in the churchyard. In some ancient churches, burial was under the floor of the church. As time passed, customs changed and people were buried in cemeteries that were often far from their homes and families. Today, many churches are reverting to the old churchyard tradition by offering church-sited columbaria such as St. Mark’s. The church has thus resumed its place at the center of the major life events of baptism, confirmation, marriage and burial.
The Garden Columbarium
The Garden Columbarium at St. Mark’s is a beautifully landscaped area adjacent to the church. Unlike remote cemeteries, the setting offers constant reminders of the tender and eternal bond between the deceased and their church family. Flowering trees, shrubs, winding walks and benches invite visitors. The reflection of seasonal changes in the Garden Columbarium recalls God’s love and promise of eternal life. Each November, before the All Saints’ Day service, crypts are adorned with flowers.
The cremation of human bodies has long been an accepted practice in the Episcopal Church. With an ever-expanding population, increasing concern for the environment and escalating burial expenses, cremation has increased in popularity. Inquiries about cremation should be directed to one of the funeral homes that offer that service.
Questions about interment in the Garden Columbarium should be directed to:St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 1000 N. Mississippi, Little Rock, AR 72207 501-225-4203.