From the earliest days Christians have chosen to have their final resting place within the community of the church. From the catacombs of ancient Rome to the great cathedrals of Europe, to the humblest churchyard in Western New York, the evidence is everywhere.

Other churches in Rochester, including on East Avenue, have had columbaria for decades. For many years members of Asbury First have dreamed about having a columbarium on the campus. The time has come to fulfill that dream.

Location of Columbarium What is a Columbarium Columbarium FAQs
Columbarium Reservation Form Columbarium Brochure


Location of the Columbarium

The Columbarium will be located on the church campus along the southeast exterior wall of the Sanctuary. Initially, the Columbarium will have 136 Niches* with provision to expand to a total of 328 Niches.

*A niche is a recessed compartment in which urns (containers) of cremated human remains are placed. Each niche can hold up to two urns.


What Is a Columbarium?

  • A columbarium is a sacred, consecrated location where urns (two urns per niche) of cremated remains are placed (inurned).
  • It completes the circle of life from birth to baptism, confirmation, marriage, and memorial services by providing a final resting place for reflection and remembrance —which is part of Asbury First’s on-going ministry to both the living and the dead.

Tim and Johanna Mahan share some thoughts about why they've chosen to invest in Asbury First's Columbarium.

Columbarium FAQs

How is the Columbarium funded?

The Columbarium is funded by the sale of niches and designated capital gifts.

What is the price of a niche?

The price of a niche is $5,000. 

What is included in the price of a niche?

  • Each niche can hold up to two urns. The price covers a portion of the cost of building the Columbarium and the creation of a permanent fund for perpetual care and maintenance.
  • There are no on-going annual charges.
  • The only other costs will be for the inscribing of the niche face plate and opening and closing at inurnment.

How do I purchase a niche?

Complete and submit the reservation form below. You can pay part or all of the cost through this form (pay by bank account, credit or debit card), or you can mail a check to: Asbury First UMC, Attn: John Ormsbee, 1050 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607.