First Presbyterian Church recently completed its first series of GriefShare meetings, a 13-week group that helps one another through the loss of a loved one or friend, and we’re getting ready to begin a new series of meetings. Over the course of the series, we had 21 people involved, coming either on Wednesday mornings or evenings. The participants, who came from our church and the community, too, were joined by facilitators who listened, encouraged and shared their own grief journey.

GriefShare offers biblical, Christ-centered teaching that focuses on grief topics from a practical perspective. There are three parts to the program – DVD presentations featuring nationally respected grief experts and real-life stories, small-group discussion and a resource book for personal reflection.

Here are some of the feedback comments we received from the participants:

  • I felt very welcomed and comforted when I spoke of hard things.
  • Thank you for providing a safe place to “collect” my grief.
  • It helped me understand my feelings and thoughts better.
  • My faith was strengthened more.
  • I was touched by your kindness and compassion.
  • I appreciated being given permission to cry and “own it.”
  • It really helped with learning to avoid pitfalls and choose healthy ways to remember my loved one, but also how to move forward.
  • We gained so much from the comments and perspectives given in the videos.
  • It gave me insight on how to deal with my grief during the holidays.
  • I was sinking into depression and I know the goodness of God was sent to me by all of you. Now I know He cares and will provide the way to help me through.

The new sessions begin in February. If you or someone you know might benefit from GriefShare, contact Pastor Scott or call him at the church, 540-434-6551, ext. 104.

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