Provide more affordable niches at Catholic churches

Ashes interred in a columbarium are an excellent way to cherish memories of loved ones, Catholic priest Father Ignatius Yeo said recently ("From ashes to diamonds: Different faiths' stand": Nov 05).

And he has my fullest support.

Having the ashes in the church's columbarium gives spouses, parents or siblings and the community the golden opportunity to pray over the departed loved ones and build a continuous bond.

Another reassuring fact is that the columbarium in all churches is well-maintained throughout the year by the caretakers.

There are reasons why some people scatter the ashes in the air, at sea, in the forest or parks, and one concern is the cost of buying a niche in the columbarium, the price of which can range from between $2,500 and $10,000 for a couple.

This does not include the cost of making the marble plaque and the purchase of the ash holder.

There are many who are out of work with little or no savings. To this end, I urge the church to provide a more affordable price for niches so that more families can have the memory of their departed loved ones kept in a safe and clean environment.

Raymond Anthony Fernando