Church records showed that the Church covered the cost of pauper burials up to 1850. In 1851 the St. Vincent de Paul Society assumed the cost of coffins and opening and closing the graves of paupers. Concerned about the constant drain on the Society’s funds for that purpose, Father J.M. Bruyere asked the Conferences in 1854 to determine some other method of covering that expense. At the same time, a broadsheet was distributed through the city, accusing the Catholic Church of forcing the Irish poor to bury their dead in their own cabbage gardens . Because of that negative publicity, the Society continued to carry the burden of burial expenses for the poor.
Excerpts from a history document
Professor Murray W. Nicolson M.A., Ph.D