Whether you have loved ones buried in our Catholic cemetery or not, we want to keep you informed. The Saint Joseph Cemetery dates to 1869. In the early 1970’s, a Cemetery Foundation was formed at the request of the late Father Charles P. Bowling, pastor of St. Joseph Parish. The Foundation is currently made up of members from St. Joseph and Holy Spirit parishes and members act as stewards for the Catholic community in the overall operations of the cemetery and its funds. The current members of the Cemetery Foundation are David Alexander, Tom Durbin, Steve Dieball, Allen Freeland, Jane Browning, John Geier, John Knepler, Joe Kunkel, Anna Maroney, Joe Miller, Tommy Herman, Fr. Randy Howard, and Fr. Ryan Harpole. On behalf of the entire Catholic Community, we express our gratitude for their diligent leadership in this important service.
While starting without funds, the foundation has been able to accumulate over the years enough funds to start a IRREVOCABLE PERPETUAL CARE TRUST FUND. The trust was started in the year 2000. Currently the Trust Fund provides about 1/3 in interest of the funds needed to support the upkeep of the resting places of our deceased loved ones. The trust will continue to grow as 20% of all sales as well as the April and October annual collections at the local parishes for the cemetery are deposited in the Perpetual Care Trust Fund.
Our Catholic Cemetery is unable to expand acreage at its current location. Therefore, as many Catholic communities have done, the Foundation in 2003 voted to build Mausoleums and Columbariums with Crypts and Niches, more and more people are choosing to be cremated. The above ground interment section is located between the St. Joseph Shrine Planter and St. Theresa Ave. A 96 Niche Columbarium was constructed in 2003 with 31 purchases of Burial Rights that year with the 2nd 96 Niche Columbarium constructed in 2009. A third 120 Niche Columbarium was constructed in 2017. A 96 Crypt Mausoleum was constructed in 2006 with 19 purchases of Burial Rights that year and the 2nd Mausoleum was constructed in 2008. More families today prefer above ground interment due to the ease of visitation and the cleanliness of above ground entombment compared to the traditional in ground burial and its elements.
The area between the two Mausoleums has a roof installed making an open air Chapel which will be for entombment services and Masses. An altar was placed in the chapel area and was donated as a family memorial. Bishop John J. McRaith consecrated the altar and blessed the area at the 2009 Memorial Day Mass.
As a note of interest, the MEMORIAL OF NAMES monument (blessed on May 30, 2004) is designed to be an active instrument to allow grieving in hope that leads to reconciliation and healing. It is to be a statement of the Gospel of Life, namely, of god’s power to redeem and of God’s boundless love of all human life. The whole church and all people of good will are invited to this place; those who have aborted children, to find and name them in the hands of the Risen Christ; those who have lost children by miscarriage and seek the opportunity to name and remember also in the Risen Christ; those who want to renew their hope in the victory of the resurrection over sin and death and of the Holy Spirit over all evil of our times; those who wish to rest and pray in Christ while remembering his invitation to the little children.
Names for the inscription on this memorial may be offered by any person who grieves the loss of his or her child. Opportunity for naming is offered for the sake of healing and reconciliation. By naming , the child is recognized and remembered. The children individually are entrusted to God who is loving and merciful to both parent and child. First names only are acceptable for inscription at no charge, but donations are graciously accepted.
Names and donations can be mailed to
Memorial of Names
Saint Joseph Cemetery Foundation
P.O. Box 10334
Bowling Green, KY 42102
The cemetery board wishes to thank Mr. Norman Simon who donated the labor and materials for the construction of the base for the Memorial of Names and the construction of the Planter at the entrance into the cemetery. The board also thanks Mr. Michael Murphy for donation of all the labor, materials and concrete work in the above ground interment section of the cemetery and the foundation for the entrance planter.