At Hope & Healing Place we see/hear those who lean into their Faith as well as those who are angry and lost regarding where their Faith fits into the saddness and "missing" in a tragic or sudden death.
We have been doing specialized training for Pastors and Youth Ministers regarding Teen Suicide Prevention. The ministers really want to learn with great questions.
We are also learning the education for ministers does not many times include the grief journey experience by so many of their members.
Sidenote: We have also learned our community volunteers receive more training/learning about grief & loss than doctors during their medical education.
So, Faith and grief is complicated.
Here is what we know.
By attending a grief support group, those attending share their hopes, frustrations, and growth with others.
By "showing up" our families show courage (that is Faith), forgiveness (that is Faith), all the emotions of loss and missing (that is Faith). At Hope & Healing Place we pray together in a hand holding circle with 18 to 20 families (80+ children, teens, adults) as we begin our Generations/Family Program evening.
What we close the door to a grief support group, God and the Faith experience is open group sharing. Whatever we work through we do so together (that is Faith community).
Faith and grief loss. Complicated. So is everything else when there is a car accident, a suicide, a heart attack death.
Faith and all the emotions of death come in the door with the family or individual....We say Welcome!