Vatican's guidelines for ashes draw mixed reactions

The church is at odds with many parishioners over its policy.

The Vatican has said that Catholics who want to be cremated cannot have their ashes scattered or kept at home.

People like Gina Weiss disagree with this new guideline.

"If that's their wish to be scattered in the ocean, then they should do that,” says Weiss.

Weiss says her uncle’s ashes were scattered out in the Gulf.

"It's their wishes and their life,” says Weiss.

The Vatican made it clear that cremation is okay. However, it's not permitted to scatter those ashes in the air, land or at sea.

They also can't be preserved in mementos or pieces of jewelry.

Church authorities concluded that the ashes of loved ones must be kept “in a holy place, that is a cemetery or a church or in a place that has been specifically dedicated to this purpose”.

A bishop can also give consent to keep your loved ones remains at home but that's only in extraordinary cases like a cemetery being ransacked.

The Vatican congregation explains separating the ashes would deprive the Christian community as a whole of remembering the dead.

"It's comforting and it's like they are here with you, a support to go on and raise your family,” says Weiss.

Weiss says having your loved ones remains close by can help cope with the death and you shouldn't be afraid to grant the wishes of those who've passed away.

"If they feel that their loved ones need to be close to them then, so be it,” says Weiss.


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