Towards a more Compassionate and Caring Community
A recently compiled report on bereavement support in the diocese says:
"Bishop Seamus has made it clear that support for the bereaved should be an integral part of our parish/deanery life.
"To that end, the following may be helpful:
"A small group of maybe 4—6 people working together at parish, cluster or deanery level to provide some of the following, after background checks and the necessary training:
- Home visit, taking a mass card/flowers shortly after the funeral service. This could lead to follow up visits if the bereaved wishes.
- An annual mass for all who have died in the current year, with an invitation card to all relevant families.
- A remembrance card on the first anniversary of the death.
- Some groups may wish to offer a space for a weekly or monthly chat in the church hall or parish house. This is already happening in two parishes in our diocese and, in one instance, is open to anyone who is lonely.
- Some thought needs to be given to confidentiality, enabling a trusting relationship to develop. Reporting back to the Bereavement Group should only be on a general level.
You may consider a prayer and information card to be given to the bereaved soon after the funeral service. This can offer support, confidentiality and a listening ear, giving a telephone number through which an appointment can be made for a visit, or simply to have a telephone conversation.
If you have any questions to ask or would like help in setting up a Bereavement Support Group in your parish contact Betty (Elizabeth) McGurk:
Tel 0191 3861311