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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Caskets handcrafted and blessed by the Trappist Monks of New Melleray Abbey

From the New Melleray Trappists in New Melleray, IA.  Please consider for your needs, but also know that it is a way to support Catholicism in Iowa.

In 1849, Trappist monks from Ireland set out on a journey to America's heartland and embraced the rolling prairie of Iowa, where we founded and built our monastery, New Melleray Abbey.
Today, we bring old world craftsmanship and a sense of sanctity to fine wooden caskets and coffins, available to families in their time of need all over the country.

A Work of Prayer

In the cool silence of the morning, the darkness slowly gives way to the soft light of the morning sun, casting its warmth onto the stone walls and floors. The clang of the bell tower reverberates throughout the grounds, the organ sings its praises as we lift our voices to God, and our prayer life flows into our work life.

A simple casket prayerfully made by monks

The Trappist philosophy calls for us to labor quietly with our hands in support of our life of simplicity, as we strive to observe the call to "pray without ceasing." We've found that many people seem to connect with the simple and honest way we deal with death and burial. Working intimately with the wood, crafting these vessels for each unique child of God who will be buried in them, we feel that casket-making is a natural extension of our sacred work. We are able to live by the work of our own hands–rather than living on donations–while still being able to serve others through what we believe is a work of mercy.
As Cistercians, we follow the ancient monastic Rule of St. Benedict. Our life is one of contemplative prayer, community liturgy, and manual labor.
Each casket we make is personally blessed by one of our monk-craftsmen, and the name of the deceased is inscribed in our Memorial Book. We then pray for each person buried in a Trappist Casket at a special mass in our church.
Experience New Melleray Abbey and the work of Trappist Caskets firsthand in the video at the top of the page, or call us for a free catalog at 888-652-1032.
Immediate delivery available 1-888-652-1032
All of our caskets are available for immediate shipment and can be delivered in 1-2 business days, depending on your destination. Overnight shipment is also an option.

A Reverence for Wood

Environmental Stewardship

Trappist monks have tenderly worked the earth for centuries, and in it we have beheld God's power and majesty. And while there has been much talk of late about "going green" and being "eco-friendly", our commitment to sustainable practices has always been guided by a spiritual mandate to practice responsible stewardship.

Handcrafted at our monastery

We get to know the personality of each species of tree, the smell of sawdust in the air, and the feel of the wood as its coarseness gently gives way to the work of our hands, and becomes smooth and strong. Crafting all of the caskets in our shop at the monastery of New Melleray Abbey, we use wood mainly from our own award-winning 1200-acre forest, and supplement from other local forests that are managed with similar values. Interestingly, some of our monks are now making caskets with wood from trees they planted when they were younger.
In memory of each person buried in a Trappist Casket, a tree is planted in our award-winning, sustainable forest. This living memorial is our way to honor your loved one and to give back to the earth.

Natural wood and materials

We work with several different types of wood, from oak, cherry, and black walnut, to simple, understated pine. Our caskets and coffins emphasize the natural beauty of the wood, are made from organic materials. A classically upholstered interior, pillow, mattress and adjustable bed is included in each casket, with additional options available for premium models.

Options for all types of funerals

We make a range of dignified and expertly crafted caskets and coffins, appropriate for a wide range of family and individual needs, such as:
  • Traditional European-style old-world coffins
  • Premium rectangular caskets
  • Simple pine and oak caskets
  • Caskets for clergy and deacons
  • Child caskets
Call us for a free catalog or to learn more about how we make our caskets at 888-652-1032.

Personalization and Custom Options

From its small beginnings as an acorn to its majesty as a grown tree, from the cool breezes of the forest to the warmth of our workshop, each tree's journey is a different one. It is a privilege to be able to prayerfully spend our time crafting something so pure into something that will honor an individual's unique life on earth.

Custom Engraving

Many people who buy from Trappist Caskets choose to personalize caskets with a loved one's name and significant dates. We can engrave a casket with a religious symbol or image, a prayer, special blessing, poem, or quotation in order to pay further tribute to his or her memory. A casket can even be engraved with your loved one's image.

Personally blessed by a monk

All caskets are constructed in the prayerful environment of New Melleray Abbey. Each casket is personally blessed by one of the monks, and those who are mourning the loss of a loved one often tell us this blessing is a source of comfort and consolation.
Funeral homes are required by law to accept third-party caskets. We can work directly with your funeral home to ensure smooth and timely delivery for your loved one's funeral service.

Keepsake crosses

A keepsake cross comes with each casket and is intended to be kept by the family of the deceased. The keepsake cross can be personalized to include the name and dates of the deceased, and additional quantities can be ordered upon request. Simple models include an optional raised wooden cross.

Additional premium and custom options

The premium caskets include upholstery upgrades of the pillow and veil and an inside lid panel. Call us for a free catalog or to discuss how your loved one can be honored through your unique customization wishes at 888-652-1032.
We at Trappist Caskets feel very blessed to be able to so humbly provide these caskets, made with the work of our hands and with prayer in our hearts, to bring some small measure of comfort and solace to families in their times of need.
Call 888-652-1032 for a catalog and your very own free cross blessed by a New Melleray Abbey monk.

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