Welcome to The Office of Catholic Cemeteries, Diocese of Rockford

Welcome to The Office of Catholic Cemeteries, Diocese of Rockford What does Catholic Cemeteries offer?

Sometimes people will ask us that question. When they do, we struggle to find the right words to offer as a response. Words that will describe not just the products we offer, the graves that we care for, the burial of the deceased, or the overall grounds that we try to improve, because there is so much more in our offering.

Click here to read more about who we are and what Catholic Cemeteries can offer you.

“Eternity is born in time, and every time someone dies whom we have loved dearly, Eternity can break into our mortal existence a little bit more.” – Henri Nouwen


Posted October, 2018

Bishop Malloy will celebrate an All Souls D ay Mass on Friday, Nov. 2nd at 12 noon, at Calvary Cemetery in Winnebago. Everyone is invited and encouraged to come and participate with us at this celebration. All those who have died from Nov. 1, 2017 through October 31st, 2018, and buried in our Rockford Cemeteries, will be remembered at this mass.

Newsletter Update – Issue 35

Posted October, 2018

Happy Fall! What a wonderful season of the year, especially here in Northern Illinois. Days are sunny and pleasantly warm, the evenings are crisp! Enjoy these days, winter is coming!

Please remember to remove your grave decorations before NOV. 5th! We will begin fall cleanup of our cemeteries on MONDAY, NOV. 5th, so we can prepare cemeteries for winter. Christmas decorations may be placed on the graves beginning Saturday, Nov. 17th. We will place your Christmas orders beginning Monday, Nov. 19th.

Our 2018 Winter/Christmas decorations are now available. Click here to purchase online. We encourage you to order early – we will substitute items if we are sold out of the item you ordered.

Director’s Message

Posted October, 2018

Dear friends,

The weather the last few weeks has been wonderful; warm, sunny days, and crisp evenings. Windows can finally be open, and fresh air fills our homes. Fall will be officially here next week, with its unique colors and beauty.

Here at the cemetery we are getting our winter equipment ready to go, knowing that after the fall season, will come the stark reality of winter, with its cold, snow and ice. Be prepared as John the Baptist reminds us!

With the Christmas decorations being advertised in this newsletter, I would like to remind each and every one of us to respect the graves of others in the cemetery. Cemetery means “a sleeping place”, where our loved ones sleep waiting for the Resurrection of the dead. Each body in the sacred ground was someone’s father, or grandfather, or son; or someone’s mother, or grandmother, or daughter. Removing items from someone’s grave is disrespecting the dead, as well as the living. Not only is it disrespectful, it is also criminal: either a misdemeanor (less than $500) or a felony (over $500.00), and those caught will be prosecuted. Our traditions may differ according to our nationality, but we all deserve respect and dignity.

Catholic Cemeteries also does charity burials, when requested by Catholic Charities or a parish priest. Included in our charity burials are the burials of all preborn babies – both brought to the cemetery from the Catholic Hospital, or by an individual family. These babies, in Calvary Cemetery, can be remembered by their families on our Memorial Wall, found in Our Lady of Providence Section (directly west of the mausoleum.) All other cemeteries have special places for the burial and remembrance of these preborn babies.

The staff of Catholic Cemeteries strives to offer each family that comes into our office our attention and care. We have recently hired two office assistants to help you when you visit our Winnebago office, Pam Gentner and Caryl Lee Hay. Ken Giambalvo is now the Assistant Administrator. Please stop in and say hello to all of us.

All of us at Catholic Cemeteries Office – in Mt. Hope in Elgin, Resurrection in Geneva, Mt. Olivet in Aurora, and Calvary in Winnebago, wish you all early blessings for your Thanksgiving and a Holy and Blessed Christmas.

In His Peace,
Carol K. Giambalvo, MA, CCCE, FAAGC
Director of Cemeteries


Posted October, 2016

As part of the ministry of Catholic Cemeteries, we are offering to any person who has the cremated remains of a loved one, and who cannot afford the cost of burying their loved one in a Catholic Cemetery, a communal space in the columbarium shown below. This columbarium will be placed at St. Mary/St. James cemetery in October.

Click here to read the full article

Columbarium image 1 Columbarium image 2

Cemetery App Available

Posted October 27, 2015

We have an app available on iOS and Android. Use the app to search the records of those interred or entombed at Calvary Cemetery in Winnebago, IL, with GPS Navigation functionality.

Updates to add additional cemetery locations are under development.

Get the App
Google Play
Google Play
App Store
Apple App Store