President Bush could have petitioned Congress for a state funeral for Rehnquist, a ceremony that would have allowed the body to lie in state in the Rotunda of the Capitol. Only state funerals include that honor.
Rules of the Roman Catholic Church permit church use for funerals for those who, like Rehnquist, are not Roman Catholics, according to a spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Washington. Rehnquist belonged to a Lutheran church and the services will be Lutheran.
Susan Gibbs, the spokeswoman for the archdiocese, said the request to use St. Matthew's came from the Rehnquist family through the court based on its size. The church has seating for about 2,000 in its main section and side chapels.