Eight Catholic cemeteries in the Diocese of Cleveland hosted Cemetery Sunday Masses on Nov. 4 in commemoration of the faithful departed. The cemeteries are part of the Catholic Cemeteries Association. All the Masses took place at 3 p.m.
Father Luigi Miola celebrated Mass at Nativity Mausoleum at All Saints Cemetery, Northfield. Father Jim Caddy was the celebrant at All Souls, Chardon; Auxiliary Bishop emeritus Roger Gries and Father Thomas O’Donnell were the celebrants at Calvary Cemetery, Cleveland; Father Robert Glepko celebrated Mass at Calvary Cemetery, Lorain in the Our Lady of Guadalupe Mausoleum; Father Thomas McCann celebrated Mass at Sacred Heart of Jesus Mausoleum at Holy Cross, Akron; Father Michael Troha was the celebrant at Holy Cross, Brook Park; Father Gerald Keller offered Mass at the St. Joseph Mausoleum at St. Joseph Cemetery, Avon; and Father Andrew Panek celebrated Mass at St. Mary Cemetery in Cuyahoga Heights.
Members of the Knights of Columbus participated in several of the liturgies.
Those attending Mass received an ornament in the shape of a heart with the verse, “Peace on earth.”
At All Saints Cemetery, Northfield, Father Miola, pastor of St. Martin of Tours Parish in Maple Heights, said the Mass was being offered for those who died during the past year and for other souls.
He said he celebrated a funeral Mass on Nov. 3 at his parish for an older woman who often sang “You are my Sunshine” to her grandchildren.
“It rained the whole day, but as soon as she was buried, the sun came out,” he told those gathered for Mass.
Father Miola said he prays that one day, regardless of our ethnic and other differences, that we are all united in a communion of saints.
“Jesus sits at the right hand of his father. He came to save us and died to save us – to bring us back to the father so we can be one in body, mind and spirit,” he added.
In the day’s Gospel, Father said various people had asked Jesus “ambush questions,” but the scribe asked a sincere one. Jesus told him that the most important thing is to love God with your whole being and to love your neighbor as yourself – embracing him for who he is for us.”
Cemetery Sunday is a way for Catholics to grieve with faith, according to officials at the Catholic Cemeteries Association. It is celebrated to coincide with All Souls Day (Nov. 2) and All Saints Day (Nov. 1).
For more information on Catholic Cemeteries Association or a listing of the cemeteries, visit clecem.org.