St. Paul offers help to grief-stricken for the holidays

St. Paul offers help to grief-stricken for the holidays
December 17
00:00 2015
Photo by Timothy Ramsey
Some of  the materials used during the “Surviving the Holidays” session of GriefShare.

By Timothy Ramsey

For The Chronicle

The holiday season is usually the time of year when families get together and enjoy one another’s company and catch up on good times. For some, though, it elicits memories and traditions of love ones who have passed away.

St. Paul United Methodist Church held its monthly GriefShare meeting Saturday, Dec. 12, on “Surviving the Holidays,” to address the issue of those who have lost loved ones during the holiday season. GriefShare is a religious-based organization with support groups all across the country that allows individuals to fellowship with others who are dealing with similar loss and uses Scripture to help people cope with their pain.

“There were women losing their husbands and husbands losing their wives, and I was chatting with a member of the congregation about how sad some people had become, and how some people had even become sheltered, and I thought something had to be done to help,” said Marian Winbush, who is one of the facilitators of St. Paul’s’ GriefShare.

St. Paul holds its GriefShare meetings once a month and addresses different areas of grief in an attempt to assist others in their time of need. Some of the topics addressed at the sessions are divorce or loss of a young child. The sessions are in groups of 13 and then a new round of sessions begins.

Saturday’s session was a very emotional one in which individuals shared stories of their lost loved ones from years back to some who have recently lost someone. The facilitators showed a video that provided tips for dealing with the loss of a loved one during the holiday season, such as confronting the pain, taking time to adjust to the loss and using your relationship with God to move forward.

“I am dealing with the loss of my daughter by surrounding myself with positive people and traveling so I won’t just sit around dwelling on the fact that I am very sad. I also go visit her grave from time to time and talk with her and put out flowers, which helps me a lot,” said Rosie Verdell when asked about her feelings on the loss of her daughter.

Winbush said she feels the most joy when she sees someone move from mourning to being able to cope with the loss and finally be able to smile and have happy thoughts and memories of the loved one they have lost. She also said she lost her husband in 1994 and being the facilitator of the group has helped her in her journey of healing.

St. Paul is the only black church in the area that has a GriefShare group and sends out invitations to local churches for them to send their members to the sessions to address any issues they may be dealing with.

The session, which is Scripture based, referred to 2 Corinthians 12:9, which states, “But he said to me, my grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weakness, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”  This Scripture was used to let the participants know that once they move aside and let God lead, He will put them on the path of healing and joy, and when they are at their weakest is when God gives them strength.

“Stay positive, pray, and surround yourself with positive energy because negativity will hurt you a lot,” said Verdell, speaking of the advice she would give to someone who has lost a loved one.

The next GriefShare session will be Jan. 16, 2016. For more information, call the church office at 336-723-4531.


About Author

WS Chronicle

WS Chronicle

Related Articles


Featured Sponsor

Receive Chronicle Updates

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.



More Sponsors