2017-07-28 / Community

Calvary to be overseen by new entity

The Diocese of Portland announced that it has signed a management services contract with Catholic Management Services, a nonprofit organization that specializes in providing business planning and professional services to revitalize cemetery operations.

The diocese owns and operates two diocesan cemeteries (St. Peter’s Cemetery in Lewiston and Calvary Cemetery in South Portland) and more than 75 parish cemeteries. All cemeteries will continue to be owned by the diocese, and cemetery staff will remain employees of the diocese but will be under the supervision of Catholic Management Services. The diocese will establish a new diocesan cemetery organization through which Catholic Management Services will initially manage the two diocesan cemeteries and three parish cemeteries.

For the past several months, Catholic Management Services has provided an interim cemetery manager at Calvary Cemetery. As goals and budgets are developed in the coming months, a new director of cemeteries will be hired and trained.

“The diocese is excited to begin our partnership with Catholic Management Services,” said David Twomey, chief financial officer for the diocese. “Our dedicated staff members will benefit from the expertise and resources of (Catholic Management Services) as we discover new ways to better serve the Catholic community through our cemetery ministry.”

“In partnering with the Diocese of Portland, (Catholic Management Services) is excited to help further the sacred ministry of their Catholic cemeteries,” said Robert Seelig, CEO of Catholic Management Services. “With changes in burial customs that include a significant increase in cremation, the Catholic church serves a vital role in supporting families as they make difficult decisions at the time of death. With a focus on outreach and education, we will work with funeral directors and parishes to enhance this important ministry for current parishioners and those looking to reconnect with the church.”

Catholic Management Services is operated under the Diocese of Oakland and headquartered in Pleasanton, California. It serves numerous dioceses across the country, promoting financially healthy and sustainable environments in areas ranging from funeral and cemetery operations to administrative functions.

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