Richard Peterson has worked for the Archdiocese of Seattle’s cemeteries for 44 years, a career he began as a seasonal grounds worker while attending college seminary. He later was named superintendent of Gethsemane Cemetery in Federal Way and in 1991 was appointed Director of Cemeteries for the archdiocese. Peterson, president of the Catholic Cemetery Conference and an active member of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Federal Way, answered some questions from Northwest Catholic about Catholic cemetery ministry.
The Archives of the Archdiocese of Seattle date back to the 1840s when our first bishop, A.M.A. Blanchet, and his vicar general, Father Jean-Baptiste Brouillet, began to set aside records documenting the building and administration of the church in this region. Since then, generations of archivists have faithfully preserved materials that document the growth and setbacks of our diverse parishes, schools and communities.