The Latest on the funeral homes impacted by COVID-19 (March 20):
The Catholic Funeral and Cemetery Services of the Diocese of Sacramento announced they have changed their operations due to COVID-19, including suspending vigils, funeral masses and weekly masses.
Original story below:
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — On any given day, families can be seen paying their respects to a loved one at the St. Mary Cemetery and Funeral Center in Sacramento.
Now, the location is just one of several funeral homes across the U.S. making changes due to new regulations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and limiting large gatherings.
“We have now limited funeral services, funeral masses if you will, to a maximum of 10 family members. So we are limiting the size,” said Jerry Del Core, president and CEO of the Catholic Funeral and Cemetery Services of the Diocese of Sacramento.
Del Core said they have implemented changes, including suspending vigils and allowing some staff members to work from home.
“Prior to that, we had practiced our social spacing and we were having everyone at least 6 feet apart and that cut the capacity of this chapel down, probably, 75%,” he explained.
Several other funeral homes across the region are implementing similar changes to prevent the spread of COVID- 19.
“Some families have opted to delay, waiting for this crisis, pandemic to really pass and then they will have their services,” Del Core told FOX40.
Del Core said it’s unclear what effect COVID-19 will have on the funeral home business in the long run.
“We know that short-term, we do believe it will impact us financially,” he said.
They are now working with families, who not only have to worry about the virus but also laying their loved ones to rest.
“May not have that full closure,” Del Core said. “So in part, that is why we are giving people an opportunity to come back at a later date and do a funeral mass where they can come and honor their loved one.”
To find out more about what the CDC is recommending for local funeral homes, click or tap here.