John Krumm has longevity with Catholic Cemeteries that spans almost 30 years. While he has seen many changes and positive developments in cemetery services, what he values most is the ministry dimension of his job. As a family service counselor, he strives to be available to help people during these difficult times in their lives. “This truly is a job where you can make a difference,” he said. “You have the opportunity to be there when tough decisions have to be made quickly.” John is a member of St. Ann’s Parish, Prairie Village, Kansas, where he serves as a Eucharistic minister and an usher.
Karen Ohde joins other family service counselors in assisting people with important decisions about pre-arrangements and at the time of a death in their families. She follows the “Golden Rule” in her work—treating others the way she wants to be treated. Karen has worked at Catholic Cemeteries since 1991. Prior to that, she had worked with other cemeteries and had co-owned a small cemetery in Kansas. She has knowledge of all aspects of cemetery management. She’s a firm believer that people have a calling in their lives and that she found hers when she began working in family services for cemeteries.
Charlie Owens joined the Catholic Cemeteries staff as a family service counselor in July 2005. He had worked 30 years for Knight-Ridder newspapers, retiring from his position as a sales and marketing executive with nationwide responsibilities. Charlie also spent five years as director of marketing for the National Catholic Reporter Publishing Company. Charlie said that he likes being able to help families think, talk about and pre-arrange burial plans. “It leaves them and me with a feeling that we’ve accomplished something good and helpful,” he said. Charlie is a member of Holy Trinity Parish, Lenexa, Kansas.
Carla Yarnell has extensive customer service experience and communication skills that she focuses on helping and assisting families with their needs and concerns. She began her career with Catholic Cemeteries as the receptionist and advanced to her role as a family service counselor. Her job involves informing people of the emotional, spiritual and financial benefits of pre-need planning and encouraging them to make decisions to achieve peace of mind and to relieve burdens for their loved ones. Originally from Kansas City, Kansas, Carla is a member of St. Therese Parish, Parkville, Missouri.
Doug Holmes, community service counselor/family service counselor, makes his home in Topeka, Kansas. Doug has a degree from Washburn University in Topeka. For 20 years, he was a chef. He was with a Knights of Columbus field agency for four years and for that same length of time served as an administrator and financial advisor for Holmes & Associates, Chtd.
Teresa K. McGuire
Teresa K. McGuire believes that two of the most important things in life to many people are death and their money. Over the 30 years she spent in retail banking as a teller, branch manager, district manager and vice president, she met with families about their financial needs. Now, in her role as a family service counselor with Catholic Cemeteries, Teresa is meeting with people to discuss end-of-life plans and needs. Teresa believes every person should have a say in how he/she is laid to rest – not leaving this up to those that are left behind. She considers making these plans ahead of time a gift to loved ones and a decision couples can share. Teresa is a member of St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center, Lawrence, Kansas.
Deacon Chris Slater
Deacon Chris is the Spiritual Advisor for Catholic Cemeteries of Northeast Kansas, as well as one of our Family Service Counselors. He and his wife, Aracely, and daughters, Destiny and Paige, are members of Prince of Peace Parish in Olathe. Deacon Chris is here not only to assist you when arranging and pre-arranging your burial plans, but also to assist you and your family with any spiritual or bereavement needs as well.
Peggy Cox joined Catholic Cemeteries in fall 2014 after a long career in real estate as a new homes specialist. She has a degree in marketing from Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa. Peggy values that she has been blessed throughout her life. Through her role with Catholic Cemeteries, she believes that she can share her faith and be of service to other Catholics. Serving as a Community Service Counselor, Peggy says, “This is a perfect fit to use my career skills and spread the word about God’s love displayed so beautifully in burial liturgies and traditions of our Catholic faith.” Peggy is a member of Sacred Heart Parish, Shawnee, Kansas.
Bill McMahon, Manager Community Service, has background as a financial advisor and president of a retail company. This practical experience prepared him to facilitate provision of outstanding and suitable products for those being assisted. “I love helping members of our Catholic community accomplish their plans for final rest in sacred space and with a fitting liturgy,” he explains. Bill views Catholic Cemeteries as a ministry that provides valuable and necessary information and solutions that are delivered in a caring manner and without pressure. Bill has a degree in finance from Oklahoma State University. He is a member of Nativity Parish, Leawood, Kansas, where he is active in a number of organizations including the Pastoral Council.
A fifth generation Catholic, Pauline Jung embraces serving the Church and Catholic families. Pre-planning our cemetery and funeral are often difficult, but through our ministry, she serves families with information on the teachings of the Church and our Catholic Rites. Feedback from our informed families are of appreciation and a sense of relief. These families inspire her to stay true to her own faith and this ministry. After 20+ years in marketing and sales for major companies, Pauline finds this is by far the most meaningful position. She is a member of Cure’ of Ars parish, Christ Renews His Parish, Faith in Action Team (FIAT), Faith and Reason KC, and St. Ignatius Prayer Exercise Program.
After earning a bachelor’s degree from Benedictine College and a master’s from the University of Kansas in Public Administration, Gary served the citizens of various communities in Northeast Kansas as a City Manager or Assistant County Administrator. “I was attracted to this ministry following the death of my father in the summer of 2016. As executor of his estate, I learned that he had thoughtfully and thoroughly made pre-arrangements for his burial, interment and funeral service through Catholic Cemeteries. Gary is a member of St. Patrick’s Parish in Kansas City, Kansas where he carries on a 35 year music ministry as a classically trained cantor. Gary is a husband and father of four and is eager to help the Catholic families of the Archdiocese learn more about protecting their families with the Catholic Burial Plan.
Tom Spalding, Community Service Counselor, has spent his professional career in the consultative sales industry. As a member of the Community Service team, Tom feels that his role in this Catholic Cemeteries ministry allows him to share his faith and offer others peace of mind and comfort in making these decisions ahead of time. Tom and his wife, Julie, along with their three children, are members of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish in Shawnee, Kansas. He is active with various ministries and a member of the Knights of Columbus 4th degree and Honor Guard/Color Corps.