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Columbarium Memorial Garden

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What is a Columbarium?:

A columbarium is a place for the respectful storage of cinerary (i.e., urns holding a deceased’s cremated remains).  It is the final resting-place of a cremated loved one providing a proper environment for thought and meditation.

What is the value of a Columbarium?:

  • Spiritual Site for Final Resting:  A key benefit the CMG affords church members and their families is the opportunity to select their final resting place in the shadow of the church which has been central to their lives.  A sacred site of beauty and dignity where their loved ones can visit and meditate at the church.

  • Simplicity of Planning:  The time of loss is a sad and stressful moment in our lives.  The investment in a CMG niche eliminates the need of your loved ones having to experience the pressures of choosing a burial site, casket, vault and monument during those difficult times.  Also, there is no need to plan for interment and memorial services at different locations and times.

  • Alternative Resting Place:  Provides an attractive and respectful alternative to the traditional in ground burial proceedings.

  • Substantial Financial Savings:  With the CMG, significant costs are limited to cremation, the urn, the columbarium niche and the obituary.

  • Security and Maintenance:  Assures long-term continuous security and care as the LCBTL’s CMG is a beautiful setting maintained by the Church and protected with lighting and fencing.

Lutheran Church By The Lake (LCBTL) is a distinctive congregation in many ways.  Many of our congregation have relocated to McCormick from somewhere else after varied and successful careers.  This creates a dilemma for some of our members at the time of the death of a loved one and making plans for burial.  The question arises, “Will I bury my loved one ‘back home’ or is there another option here in my new home?”

As the traditional cemetery proceedings are unavailable at LCBTL, it was our desire to supply another option.  During the fall of 2009 the LCBTL Church Council approved a columbarium committee to gather information and make specific recommendations concerning a columbarium.

The Columbarium Memorial Garden (CMG) at LCBTL was dedicated to the Glory of God on August 28, 2010.  The CMG offers a beautiful, tranquil space for quite reflection and meditation, as well as providing the option for those who would like for their cremains to be interred on church grounds.

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What is the investment:

  • Niche:  The investment for an individual niche is $1000.  Each niche is 12” X 12” X 12”.  This allows two standard sized urns to be placed in each niche.  The cost includes two opening and closings of the niche for inurnment, two engravings for the granite niche face plate, the inurnment service performed by the Pastor of LCBTL or a church council approved visiting Pastor and perpetual care.  It does not include the cost of urns and cremation.

  • Scattering of Ashes:  The investment for the “Scattering of Ashes” within the CMG is $250.  Included for the $250 is the cost of the paver and its engraving.

  • Paver:  The investment for a paver is $100.  The paver will be placed in an area of the CMG to complement and add to the overall beauty and esthetics of the Garden.  Also included with the investment of a paver is the cost of engraving the face of the paver.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q.     How many niches are in the CMG?

A.     The initial CMG contains two granite units.  Each of the granite units has 48 niches, each niche has the capacity to hold two standard sized urns.     In 2020,two additional granite units, each containing 48 niches, were added, making a total of 192 niches.

Q.     How much does cremation cost?

A.     Prices vary widely, but there are reputable funeral homes in our area which offer cremation for approximately $1,000 – $2,000.

Q.     How can I arrange to purchase a niche?

A.     All the information you need to learn about the Columbarium, the selection of a niche and submission of your forms are available within the LCBTL office.   Upon your signing of the contract and submission of your monies, the contact covering inurnment ownership rights will be provided to the purchaser of the rights.

Q.     May I select the niche that I want?

A.     Niche assignments are offered and are allocated in accord with the desires of each applicant on a first-come, first-served basis, determined by the date of receipt of a fully completed, paid-in-full contract.


Q.     Will non-members be allowed to purchase niches?

A.     Yes, as a congregation focused on serving our community niches are available to members and non-members alike.


Q.     What happens if I purchase a niche and decide later, for any reason, not to use it?

A.     LCBTL will repurchase your niche for the same price at which you purchased it.  The niche cannot be sold to or used by anyone other than those listed in the original purchase.


Q.     If I am a designated organ donor, will this delay cremation after my death?

A.     No, organs for transplant must be harvested very shortly after death, so there is no appreciable delay in the availability of the body for cremation.  This should be coordinated with the institution performing the cremation and the organization receiving the designated organs.


Q.     If I have other questions, whom can I call?

A.     You are encouraged to call the church office at (864) 391-3000 with all of your questions.  The church office is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

“I Am The Resurrection and The Life”

–          John 11:25

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