Christmas Update 2020
Dear Friends and Colleagues
Well what a year 2020 has been so far, who would have imagined how difficult it has been, and continues to be for so many people.
Sadly at the height of the pandemic in April we were looking after so many families who were, unfortunately, by government direction, massively restricted in their funeral arrangements. This followed the likelihood of not being able to visit loved ones in hospitals and in care homes, it truly was an extremely tough time. The knock-on effect of this was that people felt they were not able to say their goodbyes and have closure.
Our bereavement support group ‘New Era’ which originally started in 2007, was not able to meet, although in summer we had two eagerly awaited and enthusiastically attended afternoon teas; goodness me, it was lovely to see everyone, there was so much to catch up on too. Unfortunately, some group members were still shielding, it will be great to properly meet up again, whenever that is.
Our group members stay in touch in a variety of ways, there are some supportive comments and uplifting images being shared on our WhatsApp group, although it’s not quite the same.
Bridget continues to run the bereaved parent’s group ‘ Our Grieving Hearts’, although they have met in small groups, most of the earlier meetings this year were via Zoom. Before this year when I heard the word ‘zoom’ all I would have thought of as an ice-lolly, can you still get them? You can find support for bereaved parents on their website www.ourgrievinghearts.co.uk and follow the continuing rejuvenation work at Butterfly Meadow on its dedicated Facebook page, Butterfly Meadow Brentwood.
Hopefully all groups will be back to a new sort of normal before too long. We are also looking at bringing back our structured Grief Journey courses which were devised by Dr Bill Webster many years ago; these are free 6 week structured courses on coping with bereavement. They are run by a diploma trained counsellor and facilitated by trained personnel. If you, or anyone you know would be interested in attending please register your interest with me.
We offer free Dr Bill Webster’s books, ‘Now What’, ‘A guide to coping with bereavement’; and ‘When life changes’. Should anyone need a copy of this book please call us on 01277 210104. Please visit his website www.griefjourney.com. There are some interesting and supportive ideas for helping people.
Our annual memorial service was canceled last May, we missed seeing everyone. We liased with Revd Stuart Hull to provide a streamed service as part of Baby Loss Awareness Week in October. Hopefully 2021 should see us providing memorial services for families able to attend in person once more.
Remembering a loved one at Christmas
We will unfortunately not be offering stars for our Christmas tree at out offices in Brentwood and Billericay this year, you can however have a leaf on either of our memory trees and donate to our favoured charity. We have linked up with Brentwood Catholic Children’s Society (bccs) this year, a charity supporting children’s emotional health and well-being. You can light virtual stars and leave messages by visiting www.bccs.org.uk/christmas/tree-angels.
This Christmas we are supporting SNAP, Special Needs and Parents, they have devised a competition for children, the flyer is attached, or enclosed depending on how you are receiving this. SNAP have been supporting families throughout and obviously the lack of fundraising events this year has severely effected them, hence our reason to support their worthy cause. Our Christmas window for 2020 ties up with the SNAP competition, please do peep in. Look on social media too, at our Facebook account for our silly quizzes!
Thank you for taking the time to read this. With every good wish for Christmas and 2021, we hope it’s a much easier year for everyone.
Bennetts Funeral Directors Essex