This morning at work I was blessed by a time of remembrance. Several of us gathered with staff chaplains to remember our loved ones who have passed away. We affirmed our hope of resurrection with Christ, the timing of Easter not lost on us. We spoke aloud the names of friends and family members who are dearly missed. We even have a remembrance tree where you can write your loved ones name on a paper leaf. We read a litany, said a prayer. Our time together was brief but moving.
For those of us who are grieving, opportunities to remember can be incredibly meaningful. And perhaps Easter offers a good opportunity to build in a time of remembrance. In fact, when I did a bit of searching on grieving and the holidays, I came across an article called Grief this Easter: Remembering Loved Ones. In this helpful article, the following words from the author jumped out at me:
"For me Easter isn’t the holiday that first comes to mind when we talk about how hard grief can be on the holidays or special days. And yet crawling out of winter, filled with dark and cold, into Easter and spring, can be as jarring as those Christmas carols that seem to start playing in November. The hardest holidays are different for all of us, with different meanings and memories..."
All of this got me thinking that there is no bad time to create space for remembering. Maybe it means putting up a remembrance tree. Maybe it's a pastor who acknowledges those who are celebrating Easter with Jesus. Maybe it's a note in the mail to a friend who is grieving. I don't think it has to be complicated.
How do you create space for remembering in your church or around your dinner table? If you'd like, please feel free to share the name of a loved one you are remembering this Easter.