The Philadelphia Funeral Directors Association provides resources, advocacy and information to members so that they may enhance the quality of their standards and service to the families they serve in the Philadelphia area.
The Philadelphia Funeral Directors Association is extremely proud to partner in service with the Guardians of the National Cemetery. Please click on the wed site on this page for more information about the Guardians of the National Cemetery at Washington Crossing National Cemetery located in Newtown, Pennsylvania.
To the families of our community:
Consolidation of the funeral profession began with acquisition of family owned funeral homes in the 1950’s, and has continued since. Today there are approximately 5000 formerly family-owned funeral businesses owned and operated by these consolidation companies. In addition to acquiring independent businesses, the larger acquisition businesses have also acquired smaller consolidators. In recent months Service Corp. International, the largest of the acquisition firms acquired Stewart Enterprises, which had been the 2nd largest acquirer.
With the growth of the acquisition companies, many of the former employees of these companies have set off on their own to acquire funeral businesses. As a result, fewer and fewer family businesses have come available for acquisition. For this reason, the consolidators began making deals with the Catholic Church to manage their cemeteries in major metro areas such as Las Angeles, Denver, Pittsburgh, and other cities, including Philadelphia.
It was announced in funeral industry publications that StoneMor Co. MLP negotiated to purchase the operational and management rights of the below listed catholic cemeteries for an initial lease payment of $53 million, and an additional $35 million over the 60 year lease agreement. StoneMor Co. MLP is a publicly traded master limited partnership. StoneMor will be responsible for the day-to-day management of these archdiocesan cemeteries along with the 278 cemeteries and 90 funeral homes it already controls in 28 states and Puerto Rico.
- All Souls Cemetery, Coatesville
- Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken
- Cathedral Cemetery, Philadelphia
- New Cathedral Cemetery, Philadelphia
- Holy Cross Cemetery, Yeadon
- Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Cheltenham
- Immaculate Heart of Mary Cemetery, Linwood
- Resurrection Cemetery, Bensalem
- St. John Neumann Cemetery, Chalfont
- St. Michael Cemetery, Chester
- SS. Peter and Paul Cemetery, Springfield
- All Saints Cemetery, Newtown
- Holy Savior Cemetery, Penn Township
In addition to the above catholic cemeteries, StoneMor also owns the following Philadelphia area cemeteries:
- Sunset Memorial Park
- George Washington Memorial Park
- All Kirk and Nice Funeral Homes
- Rolling Green Memorial Park
A Philadelphia Inquirer published article on December 30, 2013 stated:
“Lawrence Miller, StoneMore’s Chief Executive said during a meeting with investors last month that between 60,000 and 80,000 Catholics in Philadelphia region had already purchased a grave site on of the cemeteries but nothing else needed for burial. “They don’t own their vault, they do not own their marker, they do not own their casket and don’t own the opening and closing. So there is going to be the enormous opportunity for the company to market.”
Based upon and other published statements it is apparent that StoneMor’s strategy is to recover their enormous investment through the sale of funeral home merchandise. To the uninformed consumer, purchasing these items from the Catholic church would seem prudent as they would expect the church to be fair in their pricing. But the church has little or nothing to do with how StoneMor conducts business, the church does not set prices, nor does the church monitor StoneMor’s sales techniques.
StoneMor Co. is not the only funeral home consolidator to operate in Philadelphia; Service Corp. International, the largest of the international acquisition companies, operates the following cemeteries throughout the area.
- Forest Hills Cemetery
- Lamb Funeral Home
- Wm. Rowen Grant Funeral Home
- Shalom memorial park
- Hillside cemetery
- Westminster Cemetery
- Roosevelt Memorial Park
- Whitemarsh Memorial Park
- Glenwood Memorial Gardens
- Alleva Funeral Home
- Philadelphia memorial Park
For a comprehensive list of all of Service Corp.’s Philadelphia area funeral homes and cemeteries, visit the Dignity Memorial website at...
For more articles on the subject, follow the links below...