cremation, distribution of ashes

cremation, distribution of ashes
Question from Theresa on 6/5/2008:

My uncle converted to Catholicism before his death but had requested his remains be cremated and distributed in a lake. The latter has never been done, they are in the home of a relative. This same family member who assumed this responsibility intially and has the remains, now is placing this responsibility on me, which I am not going to accept. What is Church teaching on the distribution of the ashes.
Answer by Rev. Mark J. Gantley, JCL on 6/14/2008:

You are permitted to have a burial at sea, so to speak, with the ashes. I have been told that they have some sort of cardboard containers that disintegrate quickly once submerged into water that can be used to contain the ashes for the burial. This is fine.

The ashes, however, are not just to be scattered or tossed about in the wind. That would be disrespectful to the remains of a human being.

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