What is a Columbarium?
A columbarium is a structure with niches (receptacles) to respectfully contain the deceased’s cremated remains. A church columbarium is a place of remembrance for families wanting to maintain a connection with the church throughout all of life’s events: births, baptisms, marriages, deaths, and all the days in between.
The Columbarium Task Force was reinstated in 2022 to explore the construction of a columbarium on-site at Trinity Lutheran Church. The church council is recommending the adoption of the proposal to the congregation. The proposed project will be presented to the congregation for approval at the semi-annual meeting on June 26, 2022.
The Columbarium Task Force proposes installing a single-sided columbarium with 99 companion niches, providing space for two bronze urns in each niche. In total, the columbarium would hold up to 198 urns. The opposite side of the columbarium would be a Memorial wall with 99 scored memorial panels, allowing for space to honor up to 198 saints who have gone before us but have alternate burial or interment arrangements. Eickhof of Crookston, Minnesota, would provide the columbarium wall. The foundation and finish work would be provided by Dave Randall Construction locally. The Task Force has worked with the city and state to determine placement and regulatory parameters. As depicted in the rendering photo, the columbarium would be constructed on the south side of the church and would align with an existing buttress. Therefore, the Fellowship Hall windows would not be obstructed. The columbarium would be finished with a pitched concrete capstone, stone trim on the sides to match the church, and engravable granite faceplates. A paver walkway and patio would be constructed to access the columbarium wall. Landscaping would be adjusted accordingly to accommodate this new structure.
The Columbarium Task Force and the Trinity Church Council believe that a columbarium at Trinity provides an opportunity for us as a congregation to serve our members in a new way that completes the cycle of life on this earth. Over the past two years, the events in this world have certainly increased our awareness of our vulnerability and mortality. As a church, we have made caring for each other in unusual and challenging circumstances a high priority. We feel that providing a sacred space on our church grounds to honor those who have helped build our church community would be a blessing.
The Columbarium project will be funded by a generous donation from an anonymous donor. The pre-sale of companion niches and memorial wall spaces will be available to those who wish to purchase. The Columbarium Task Force will have pricing and further construction details to share in an information session following the 9 AM outdoor worship service on June 12, 2022. The columbarium project will also be presented prior to a congregational vote at the semi-annual meeting on June 26, 2022. I personally ask each of you to be open-minded and consider this wonderful opportunity to serve our members who have lost loved ones of all ages. A columbarium at Trinity would allow these loved ones to be kept close to the heart of our church and honored in a beautiful, respectful way.
Columbarium Task Force Chair