Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Untitled...

Spent this morning at staff meeting trying to dream up a title for the service we are planning for All Souls' tide. The idea is the far from revolutionary one of providing a service to which we invite all those with whom we've been in contact via funerals this year. The format, still under construction, will involve the almost-obligatory opportunity to light a candle, a chance to remember with thanksgiving and, we hope, a stepping-stone on the route to recovery. In a parish where it just isnt manageable for the clergy to remain in close touch with all the bereaved relatives we encounter, it is also a way of saying that they and their losses have not been forgotten. I think it's important,- but I'm stumped for a title, I really am...One suggestion was "A time to remember..." - which is lovely on one level, specially with the implications of re-building that lie at the root of the word...but then, it's just a week before the "Remembrance Sunday" stuff, and we don't want people to come expecting poppy wreaths and two minute silences,- and being deeply disappointed..With invitations and publicity needed soon, this is becoming rather perturbing, so I would love some thoughts from any of you still reading.

5 comments:

John said...

I'm not sure quite what you need, but perhaps something along these lines?

Sight unseen
Behind and before
Journey on
A light in the darkness

pax et bonum
John

Tom Allen said...

Why not try something simple like:
Annual (or Parish) Memorial Service

while we might have reservations about the theology I have found it explains what it is to people unfamiliar with churchy things. I have a simple postcard format for an invitation in Word which i could email to you which has served me well in two parishes

Do really use staff meetings for creative thinking?

Liked the blog about Lyle Denon - he was a teenage role model for me when he was Cuddesdon theoloical college with my Dad - its hard to imagine the rebellious student as an Archdeacon - how we all change

1 i z said...

My mum is a Southwark Pastoral Auxillary and specialises in bereavement counselling/training etc.

She's held several of these services over the last few years in her parish and each one has been totally over-subscribed. Phenomenally popular with non-church goers - definitely meeting a need that appears to be out there.

As I've commented before the church still tends to 'do death' really well. A time perhaps when the need for ritual and journey marking is still very raw in the average person.

I'll ask her for any ideas/title suggestions etc when I speak to her next...

B1 said...

We had All-Saints Sunday at my church, and everyone was invited a couple of weeks ahead to put the name of their loved one, whomever they were or whenever they died, on a large tablecloth that would be used during the service. The table cloth was in a public area for the 2 weeks before so that people could read the names and/or add one. Then in the Sunday service, a minister read off the names of members (only the members because there were so many) who had died that year while another minister lit a candle for each and set it down on the table (covered by the table cloth). It was really nice.

Sally said...

And then they set fire to the cloth.............