The Bereavement team sees its role as assisting and supporting a family who has suffered the death of a loved one – from early visits, helping to prepare for the Requiem or Funeral Service, to ongoing personal support.
There are many physical preparations and burdens that loved ones have to deal with. Local Undertakers can provide pamphlets especially prepared to guide families through.
They suggest that death should be discussed openly with family members, so that each can express personal desires. Ageing parents may wish to plan details of their own funeral.
There are also many business and legal matters to attend to. Important as they are, spiritual affairs are of greater significance. In spite of the sadness of loss, we should not see death as an end.
Through the Church, Our Lord offers the Mass and Sacraments, especially Eucharist and Reconciliation, to help us in our preparation for the next life. When age or sickness indicates the later part of, or risk to our life, the “Sacrament of the Sick” further consolidates our preparation. For this reason it is vitally important to advise the priest when our loved ones face any serious threat to their well being.
Our Bereavement Group welcomes any who would wish to participate in this work. For further information contact the Parish Office – 5571 1161
The following is taken from an article by Fr Paul Boudreau, a Priest from the Norwich Diocese:
When those we care for are faced with the death of a loved one, especially a tragic death, we want so much to comfort and help yet so often find ourselves speechless, wondering what we can say that will help.
That wouldn’t be so bad, but sometimes we try to fill the silence with something, anything that might soften the devastating impact of loss. We mean well: we just don’t know what to say.
Forget the religious platitudes – “It must be God’s will” or “God must have a reason” when trying to comfort people. They don’t work!! Offer instead gestures of affection and words of sorrow. It’s very appropriate to say “I’m so sorry”. People even in grief, understand sorrow. Grieve with them. If they find it necessary to rage against God – let them. God understands and can take it.
We do not need words of wisdom to console. Our presence, our understanding that the grieving process can entail anger, disbelief, numbness and bewilderment as well as misery and our willingness to listen and sympathize can also help and support the bereaved.