to accompany and give back hope

Parish Nursing Bulletin



Understanding Grief

In light of the recent tragedies in the U.S.A., many of us are experiencing grief, anger and worry about the future. Communal grief also reinforces personal grief. It is important to accept our feelings. Unacknowledged emotions cause stress which tends to emerge later as health problems (e.g. cancer, heart disease, depression, etc.). Spiritual traditions offered through prayers, liturgies and rituals help people deal with grief. Contemporary writers have added to the history of comforting words.

Grief as a rehearsal:
"Grief is the time when we are blessed with the opportunity to complete a natural process of spiritual death and rebirth before our own death." Stephanie Ericsson (Companion through the Darkness)

Grief as a link to others:
"Grief is a sign that we loved something more than ourselves…Grief makes us worthy to suffer with the rest of the world." Joan Chittister (Gospel Days)

Grief as a sign of love:
"Grief is love not wanting to let go."
Earl A. Grollman (Living with Loss)

Allowing grief out:
"An English professor at college once told our class about how he dealt with the death of a close friend. He said he went home and played a recording of the saddest music he knew; he plunged into the darkness; he acknowledged his grief and allowed it to pour out. He knew that the only way he could get beyond his loss was to allow himself to feel the pain in all its intensity." Helen Luke (The Way of Woman)

The promise of Jesus:
"Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted."
St. Matthew: Chapter 5, Verse 4



© 2009 Parish Nursing Ministry