In the community of First Church, the death of one touches all of the family of faith. When a death occurs, the immediate family is encouraged to contact the church as soon as possible in order that pastoral care, the sympathy of members, and the prayers of all might be extended. Family members will share in the planning of a funeral/memorial service and may assist in leading the service if desired.
Funerals recognize both the pain and sorrow of the loss that death brings and the Christian hope of resurrection in Jesus Christ. Services are usually held in the meeting house.
If a reception is desired at church following the service, the Hospitality Team will set up, serve, and clean up. The Hospitality Team provides two serving tables with table cloths, dishes, silver services, napkins, tea, coffee, and ice water.
If the family wishes food, they may provide it or have it catered (sandwiches, and cookies/bars). Family or friends may provide flowers for the sanctuary and/or two small floral arrangements for the food tables.
The Memorial Garden
The Memorial Garden is located on the church grounds close to the sanctuary and directly behind the Colonial Gardens of the Historical Society’s General William Hart House.
The Memorial Garden has been dedicated to various services of the church, but primarily for the interment of ashes in certain consecrated areas. The garden is a place for rest, meditation, and prayer. The guiding concept of the Memorial Garden is to provide a simple, dignified memorial for loved ones placed to rest there.
Who may use the garden? The Memorial Garden is for the use of church members and their families who may request interment.
After interment, the exact location of the burial plot is recorded in a permanent church document.
The deceased’s name and years of birth and death may be added to a bronze plaque mounted on a stone adjacent to the burial area.
A separate bronze plaque has been provided for the names of loved ones not interred in this garden.
A large permanent Memorial Book has been established and is maintained by the memorial Garden Committee to record biographical information and genealogy of those interred. The committee enters basic information, which can be supplemented by details the family may wish to contribute. The Memorial Book is kept in the Church Office.
Memorial gifts are welcome and are recorded in the Memorial Book. The initial cost of developing the garden was met through memorial gifts and the sale of Burial Right Certificates. Further income is dedicated to expansion, improvement, and maintenance of the garden and the Perpetual Care Fund. Gifts in memory of those who have died may be made to this fund.
Burial Right Certificates
Burial Right Certificates may be purchased at any time through the Church Office. This precludes decisions having to be made under stress and emotion at the time of death.
Within the garden certain specific areas have been reserved for interment of ashes. Each burial plot is large enough to accommodate two interments if desired. For members of the church, the cost of one interment is $200 and the cost of two in the same plot is $300. For church family non-members these charges will be $400 and $600. There is a small charge for opening and closing the plot, plus an additional charge for those wishing to record the deceased’s name on the bronze plaque.
The cost of having a name placed on the plaque for one not interred here is $100 plus the cost of the bronze nameplate.
A separate honorarium for the Minister of $50 is requested.
Further information about funeral services, and a copy of Rules and Regulations of the Memorial Garden may be obtained from the Church Office, 860-388-3008, or email
Administration of the Memorial Garden and the Memorial Book is the responsibility of the Memorial Garden Team. This team is charged with the care, maintenance, and future development of the Memorial Garden.