The Columbarium

Allowing members to choose the sanctity of their church as an enduring place of rest, holding true to our Christian heritage

Columbarium in early Rome meant, simply, a nesting place for doves. When Christians, relegated to Rome's catacombs, began using cliff-side niches to seal away ashes of the faithful who died, the term "Columbarium" took on its present meaning: sacred compartments for storage of cremated remains.

Why Select a Columbarium?

Spiritual Site for Final Repose. In a return to church tradition, it provides members of the Church and their families the opportunity to choose the shadow of the church, which has been central to their lives, as their final resting place. The site is a place of beauty and dignity where friends and family can visit and meditate at any time.

Simplicy of Arrangements. It eliminates the pressures of choosing a burial site, casket, vault and monument. It provides a place for internment immediately adjacent to the Sanctuary.

Substantial Financial Savings. The combined cost of a columbarium niche and cremation are less than one-fourth the cost of a casket, burial site and marker.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the Columbarium located?

The Columbarium is located on the north side of the campus between the Sanctuary and the Education Building.

How many niches will the Columbarium have?

The columbarium will have capacity for 760 niches in Phase I. 160 of these niches are currently built out and available. Each niche has the capacity to hold two urns. In the future, additional niches will be added.

Who oversees the Columbarium?

The Columbarium is a ministry of First United Methodist Church Richardson and functions under the authority of the Board of Trustees. A Columbarium Committee, appointed by the Trustees, oversees its operation.

Who may use the Columbarium?

Inurnment in the Columbarium is limited to present or past Church members and members of their immediate families, including spouses, parents and children. It is also available to ordained or diaconal ministers of the United Methodist Church.

What is the fee?

The fee to purchase a double niche in the columbarium is $3,800. See below for financing options.

What is included in the fee?

The niche fee includes opening and closing the niche for inurnment and perpetual care. Each niche will accomodate two urns. The fee does not cover the cost of cremation, urns, or inscription for the niche plaque.

How do I purchase a niche?

Print the Application to Purchase a Right of Inurnment and the Columbarium Rules and Regulations. Mail or bring the completed application and payment of the fee to Dianne Weideman in the Finance Office. Once your application has been processed and payment in full has been received, a certificate covering inurnment ownership rights will be sent to the purchaser of the rights.

How do I pay the fees?

You may pay the fees by check, credit card or bank draft. The Church accepts Visa, Mastercard and Discover. Please complete the credit card information, attach a voided check (for bank draft) or attach a check to your Application Form.

May I finance the fees?

Yes. Fees may be financed at zero interest over a period of 24 months. A $500 deposit is required. You will not be able to select a niche location or inurn anyone in the columbarium until the fee has been paid in full. Please contact Dianne Weideman, Director of Finance at to request a payment plan.

May I select the niche location?

Currently we are allowing purchasers to select their niche location. However, at some point in time, niche assignments will be managed by the Columbarium Committee and will be assigned on a first-come-first-served basis.

May I honor a loved one by purchasing a niche?

Yes. Niches may be used as a memory marker when your loved one is buried or interned at another location.

What happens if I purchase a niche and decide not to use it?

After approval from the Columbarium Committee, FUMCR will repurchase your unused niche for 75% of the purchase price. Once cremains are placed in a niche, no refund will be made, even if the cremains are removed by the heirs. The niche cannot be sold to or used by anyone other than those listed in the original Application Form.

What if I have already made other burial arrangements?

Should you prefer inurnmnent in our Columbarium, you should contact the facility with which you made arrangements to learn how those arrangements can be terminated. Some refund may be due on services paid for, but in most cases you will need to sell burial plots or mausoleum slots through a broker or the newspaper.

What if I have additional questions?

If you would like more information on The Columbarium, please contact Dianne Weideman, Director of Finance at 972-996-0106 or . She will be happy to answer any questions you may have or put you in contact with The Columbarium Committee, if needed.