Grief is often defined as the normal and natural emotional reaction to loss or change of any kind. It covers so many kinds of losses and ranges of emotions. We hear the statement about each of us grieving in our own way which many of those of us that have had losses agree with.
It is difficult to explain all the emotions and physical conditions that can result from grief in a few short pages as part of this web page.
What we do know is that God understands our pain and is there to comfort us in whatever ways we need, through the words He offers us in the Scriptures, and through the people and resources he makes available to us when we need them to help us.
The St. Marks Church family offers love and support whether you are a long-time member or visitor, relative or friend to a member or visitor, regular church attendee or haven’t attended church in a while, or someone new who is reaching out to God for the first time trying to understand what you are feeling and seeking guidance and help. We are here for you and are praying for you to find the guidance and comfort that you need when you need it.
Pastor Ash is available to talk with you and/or your family. Just call the church office at 972-279-8042 to request to talk with him or use the “Talk with the Pastor” request on this website to make your request if that is more comfortable for you.
GRIEF SUPPORT GROUPS
A Grief Recovery group, led by Ila Dennis, is available to anyone who has lost a loved one to death. It meets every second Monday at 2pm at St Marks Methodist Church in Mesquite. Call 972-279-8042 for additional information and/or check the website calendar for schedule updates.
The Christian Survivors of Suicide Loss (CSOSL) grief support group, led by suicide loss survivor Shirley Weddle of St Marks UMC meets every 3rd Tuesday from 6:30 – 8:30 pm via Zoom. This ongoing support group is for those who have lost someone to suicide. We tell our stories, support each other, and discuss a different topic related to suicide grief each time we meet. This group is “open,” which means that new members may join at any time. For additional information and to receive the Zoom link, contact Shirley Weddle at [email protected] or call 972-890-7227 and leave a message.
Grief Share Support Group, Christian Survivors of Suicide Loss, Celebrate Recovery and Divorce Care Support groups are available at Lovers Lane United Methodist Church in Dallas. See the website for dates and room locations.
The Compassionate Friends Support group is for anyone who has suffered the loss of a child. The goal in this group is not to “recover” but to be there and support one another through this terribly sad journey. We learn not to let go, but to find a way to hold on with a little less pain. We also learn that we are not alone in this walk! The group meets on the 4th Tuesday of every month at 7:00 p.m. at Christ United Methodist Church at Parker and Coit in Plano, Room NE154. (Please enter through the North side door, take the second right, and down the hall three doors to the left.) The doors usually close around 7:20 p.m. so if you are late, please call Bonnie Kelly (214-907-1462) and someone will come and let you in.
Why Do We Benefit from a Support Group?
- Helps us feel less isolated; we may not know anyone else who has been through what we’ve been through
- Provides reassurance that healing will happen
- Offers validation that grieving is expected and normal
- Provides understanding from others in the group about common experiences and feelings
- Creates a chance for us to learn from each other and to learn about the grief process
- Gives us resources to seek other information outside the group
- Supplies personal warmth and spiritual support at a time when we need it most.
How Does Recovery from Suicide Death Differ from “Regular” Grief?
- Sometimes there is a feeling of stigma – that others will be shocked and judgmental about this kind of death
- The “why?” question seems to be more pronounced; often suicide survivors feel almost compelled to solve the mystery of their loved one’s death. There is a feeling if one can only gather enough information, the death will make sense.
- Emotions such as anger and guilt may be more intense
- Some survivors may experience post-traumatic stress syndrome, especially if he or she had to deal directly with the death. This involves an intense fear about another traumatic event happening and requires special counseling.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES. If you would also like to explore books or online resources that others have found helpful, the Stephen Ministries series on Grief is available at the St. Marks Welcome Center Library as well as many online resources that list Scripture Verses which offer comfort and hope during times of grief are available. One such list was created by a son grieving the loss of his father. It is available in a PDF form.