St. Mary’s Anglican Rev. Selinde Krayenhoff holds a ceremony to dedicate the St. Francis Pet Memorial Garden in Nanoose Bay. (Onnig Cavoukian/photo submitted)

St. Mary’s Anglican Rev. Selinde Krayenhoff holds a ceremony to dedicate the St. Francis Pet Memorial Garden in Nanoose Bay. (Onnig Cavoukian/photo submitted)

Nanoose Bay church opens special pet cemetery

St. Mary offers garden for ashes to be buried, memorialized

When a beloved pet dies, many people bury them in their backyards.

For those looking for other options, St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Nanoose Bay has created a special woodland burial ground, St. Francis Pet Memorial Garden, where people can have their pets interred.

St. Mary’s is now accepting cremated remains of pets and will inter the ashes in a communal burial lot. A service of celebration may also be arranged to be conducted by a clergy person or with the assistance of one of the memorial garden volunteers.

Rev. Selinde Krayenhoff said the idea came about more than two years ago as a way to serve the community. A plan was then submitted to the Anglican Diocese of British Columbia, which not only endorsed it but also provided some money through its Vision Fund to make it a reality.

“We’re kind of pioneers in this diocese but elsewhere in North America, there are pet cemeteries and in Europe,” said Krayenhoff.

“We have a lot of pet lovers in this parish including someone who ran a pet rescue organization for years. Especially retired people with animals, they really become an integral part of their families. And when they die, people are bereaved and they want a way of honouring their pets and receiving support and acknowledgement that that relationship was a significant one. We wanted a place where parishioners can put their pet ashes but we wanted to extend it to the Nanoose community and probably beyond.”

Krayenhoff said they’re not burying any bodies, only the ashes of small animals.

“Small pets only,” said Krayenhoff. “Unfortunately, we can’t accommodate horses or other large animals.”

The garden will also have a pet memorial board in the centre and feature plaques with the names of pets, regardless of whether they’re interred there.

“They can order the plaques,” said Krayenhoff. “It’s just a way for people, even when they have their pets buried elsewhere or left at the vet once they’ve been euthanized, they can memorialize their pets with a plaque in the garden.”

St. Mary’s launched the pet cemetery service on Oct. 4 and included the annual blessing of the animals and dedication of the garden.

The fee to have a pet’s ashes buried in the garden is by donation, said Krayenhoff, as they need the funds to cover maintenance costs of the garden. There is a set price for the plaques and is available at the parish office at 2600 Powder Point Road, Nanoose Bay.

“This is just a simple way of acknowledging what a big part pets play in people’s lives and how they need support in the end, some closure,” said Krayenhoff. “We sometimes downplay how unconditional that love can be and it really makes a big difference in our lives.”

For more information, you can email admin@stmarynb.ca or call 250-468-5684.

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

ParksvillePets

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The intersection at Moilliet Street and Despard Avenue where a 12-year-old boy was struck by an oncoming vehicle early November while crossing at a marked crosswalk. (Mandy Moraes photo)
City staff members, school district officials to discuss high-traffic Parksville intersection

Young boy suffered broken leg after being hit in Despard/Moilliet crossing

An acre of the former ‘Bus Garage’ property has been sold to Naked Naturals Whole Foods Ltd. (Town of Qualicum Beach photo)
Qualicum Beach sells prime downtown property to Naked Naturals for $2.75M

Town to retain more than an acre of land for development of public amenities

Environment Canada is forecasting snow for the east Vancouver Island region the weekend of Jan. 23. (Black Press file)
Up to 15 cm of snow forecast for Parksville area this weekend

Snow to begin Saturday night, according to Environment Canada

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

The Vancouver-based SAR team successfully rescued two lost snowshoers off of the west side of Tim Jones Peak in the early morning of Monday, Jan. 19. (North Shore Rescue photo)
B.C.’s busiest SAR team raises alarm after 2021 begins with fatality, multiple rescues

‘People beyond ski resort areas of Seymour, Grouse, and Cypress go without cell reception,’ SAR warns

Police are searching for an alleged sex offender, Nicole Edwards, who they say has not returned to her Vancouver halfway house. (Police handout)
Police hunt for woman charged in ‘horrific’ assault who failed to return to Surrey halfway house

Call 911 immediately if you see alleged sex offender Nicole Edwards, police say

A screenshot from a local Instagram account video. The account appeared to be frequented by Mission students, and showed violent videos of students assaulting and bullying other students.
Parents, former students describe ‘culture of bullying’ in Mission school district

Nearly two dozen voices come forward speaking of abuse haunting the hallways in Mission, B.C.

Joe Biden, then the U.S. vice-president, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau take their seats at the start of the First Ministers and National Indigenous Leaders meeting in Ottawa, Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau, Biden to talk today as death of Keystone XL reverberates in Canada

President Joe Biden opposed the Keystone XL expansion as vice-president under Barack Obama

Prince Edward Island’s provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. A lozenge plant in Prince Edward Island has laid off 30 workers, citing an “almost non-existent” cold and cough season amid COVID-19 restrictions. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Almost non-existent’ cold and cough season: P.E.I. lozenge plant lays off 30 workers

The apparent drop in winter colds across the country seems to have weakened demand for medicine and natural remedies

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
Disgraced Kelowna social worker faces another class-action lawsuit

Zackary Alphonse claims he was not informed of resources available to him upon leaving government care

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Most Read