There has been outrage following the church council clearing of St Oswald’s Burneside graves near Kendal.
Items were taken from the churchyard such as artificial flowers and toys, leaving some people "hurt" and "angry".
They took away things like plastic flowers, ornaments and other mementoes with family members accusing the church of not showing the items proper respect.
However, the church have defended the move in a statement where they've said they are "deeply sorry".
They also mentioned that they gave months of notice in advance.
They said: "We understand the sensitivities that surround this situation and are deeply sorry if people have been left feeling hurt or angry.
"However, these items were in contravention of the Churchyard Regulations which are overseen by the Chancellor of the Diocese who is the ecclesiastical Judge with ultimateresponsibility for decisions affecting churchyards."
The church issued statements multiple times warning that the items would need to be removed.
They added: "In May 2021, a notice was posted in the local parish newsletter explaining the need for such items to be removed. This appeared again shortly after and furthermore in January 2022.
"In February’s newsletter, people were asked to remove the items, with a further notice appearing in March’s newsletter to explain that items would start to be removed from graves and stored for collection."
Just fresh flowers are allowed on the graves.