From its founding, the Cathedral has served as the final resting place for many in the Cathedral community, its supporters and those of local and national significance. The Cathedral currently has two locations available for interment: the West Crypt Columbarium and the All Souls Memorial Garden.
The West Crypt Columbarium
Located adjacent to the Chapel of St. Joseph of Arimathea, the West Crypt Columbarium has both columbarium niches and full body burial vaults available for interment with the name of the deceased and years of birth and death carved on closure stone tablets.
Applications for interment in the Columbarium niches are for two people; any additional interments require subsequent application and approval. No items other than the urns are allowed in the niches.
Full body burial vaults are limited to one body. Once applications have been approved, the applicant will be asked to select a niche/vault. Epitaphs are limited to name and years of birth and death only.
Interment in the Columbarium is an automatic privilege for the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church (and spouse); the Episcopal Bishop of Washington (and spouse); and the Dean of Washington National Cathedral (and spouse).
Visiting the Columbarium
The Cathedral’s West Columbarium is open for family visitation on a limited basis and by appointment only. Those interested in arranging a visit may contact the Worship Office at: [email protected] or 202-537-5772. Please note that all current health and safety protocols will be followed.
Placement of flowers, candles, or any other ornamentation is not permitted in any of the interment facilities. Those wishing to arrange for memorial flowers on the St. Joseph’s Chapel altar should contact the Altar Guild directly at: 202-537-6215.
All Souls Memorial Garden
Located within the Cathedral Garth, the All Souls Memorial Garden is intended as a place of tranquility, peace and natural beauty. The Cathedral Garth is enclosed by a cloister and features a peaceful fountain and benches for rest and meditation. The All Souls Memorial Garden provides in-ground burial for cremated remains.
Applications are for one burial each. Cremains are interred directly into the earth. The burial of urns or other containers is not permitted.
All burials are treated in the same way, with equal reverence. Our tradition of common prayer has a parallel in our tradition of common burial, conveying the sacred principle behind all of the ministries of the church – the equal dignity and worth of every human being.
Memorial bronze plaques are mounted on curved granite wall in the garden area and engraved to commemorate the full names and years of birth and death for those interred.
Visiting the Garth Memorial Garden
All Souls Memorial Garden may be visited at any time. The placement of flowers, candles, or any other ornamentation is not permitted. Visitors wishing to arrange for memorial flowers on the Good Shepherd Chapel altar should contact the Altar Guild directly at: 202-537-6215.
Planning a Service
For those interested in planning a funeral or memorial service at the Cathedral, please contact the Worship Department at (202) 537-5772 or [email protected] Different fees for services apply.
Memorial and Honor Gifts
Honor and memorial gifts to the Cathedral are recorded in the Cathedral’s Book of Remembrance. In addition, a card will be sent to the honoree or their family informing them of this special tribute. Make an honor or memorial gift online.