For the first Christians, the resurrection after death was a strong reality. They did everything they could to be able to bury the bodies of their dead. When we visit the catacombs in Rome, we are struck by the care and the faith with which the dead were buried. They are laid out as if they were sleeping. «We look for the Resurrection of the dead and life everlasting» (The Creed) Such is the faith of Christians who believe that, just as Christ rose from the tomb with his body, so too we will rise with our body by the power of the Holy Spirit.
This is why cremation had been rejected for a long time since it was seen as a refusal to believe in the Resurrection. Today the Church no longer forbids a funeral ceremony if a person chooses cremation for a GOOD REASON, and there is no danger in compromising the belief in the resurrection of the dead. In certain countries, it is sometimes a necessity, and also under certain circumstances. The same respect ought to be given to the ashes as is given to the body of the deceased. They should be deposited in an established and respectable place in a cemetery but NEVER IN ONE’s HOME. Nevertheless, the relationship between faith and practice leads us to PREFER burying the body whenever possible. This signifies more clearly the respect of the body of each person who has become a temple of the Holy Spirit through baptism and who is called to the resurrection on the last day. Nourished by the Eucharist - the Body of Christ - our mortal bodies are given the promise of immortality. Burying the dead, as the first Christians did, signifies the expectation of the Resurrection. Even in those situations where cremation seems the only possible alternative, the Church always desires that the Funeral Mass be celebrated with the body present, and then the cremation can take place afterwards.