Co-leaders Mary Helen Gammon and Jane Talbot Email: [email protected]
Wanting to volunteer with this ministry?
Please, read about how we support those with a loss due to death and contact us to discuss how you can be involved. We need both behind-the-scenes helpers and those working directly with mourners.
What is a Grief Ministry?
Our mission is to support those who are suffering grief from the loss of a deceased loved one and to “companion” with them as they walk the road of bereavement to a “new normal."
Care is expressed in a variety of ways – our Companion Volunteers meet in person with those who have a loss due to death. This support can be experienced in two different formats - by attending small group Comfort Cafe (offered twice a month) or by joining in a 12-week grief support group (offered in the spring and the fall). All of our ministry efforts rely on the prayer support offered by Prayer Volunteers and the ongoing work of the Communication & Outreach Volunteers. Both of these groups support the ministry behind-the-scenes in sharing the grief ministry mission. This ministry also offers grief materials, resources and speakers/presentations to help inform everyone about the grief process.
What is grief? What is mourning? Are they the same?
Grief is a natural reaction to loss, a deep sorrow following the death of a loved one.
Mourning is the open expression of thoughts and feelings regarding the death of a loved one. Mourning refers to the outward expressions of a grief which is internal and unique for each person who grieves.
Grief and mourning are different in that the first is internal and the later is external, more visible to others.
What is the “companioning” model of grief support?
The Companioning Model is about walking with those who are grieving. Grief support is not about “leading” or “fixing” the griever. Companioning is about ears that can listen and a heart that cares. Companioning is about honoring another's pain by being alongside them, respecting their journey but not taking charge of it. Companions are caring supporters, not experts or professionals. Our Companioning Model honors the fact that each griever's journey is his/her own and is unique. We hold confidentiality as a must in all our interactions.
|Prayer Volunteers||Ann Flanagan||[email protected]|
|Communications & Outreach Volunteers||Eileen Morini||[email protected]|
|Comfort Cafe Volunteers||Mary Lowe-Murphy||[email protected]|
|Surrport Groups||Mary Helen Gammon||[email protected]|
|General Information||[email protected]|
BOOKS TO READ
Understanding Your Grief: Ten Essential Touchstones for Finding Hope
And Healing Your Heart
by Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D
Gentle Keeping: Prayers and Services for Remembering Departed Loved Ones Throughout the Year
by Mauryeen O’Brien, O.P.
When Someone Dies: A Child-Caregiver Activity Book
by the National Alliance for Grieving Children
Tear Soup: A Recipe for Healing After Loss
by Pat Schwiebert & Chuck DeKlyen
The Wilderness of Suicide Grief: Finding Your Way
by Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D.
An Empty Cradle, A Full Heart: Reflections for Mothers and Fathers after Miscarriage, Stillbirth or Infant Death
by Christine O’Keeffe Lafser
WEBSITES TO EXPLORE
A listing of grief-related websites, books and articles compiled by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia
A discussion of the challenges of grief, important things to remember about the process, and helpful things to do
Offers books and bereavement resources
Source for helpful articles, books and resources
National Alliance for Grieving Children
LOSS – Loving Outreach to Survivors of Suicide
Contact Emily Tegenkamp at [email protected]