Celebrating life and light in darkness

Published 8:07 pm Sunday, December 3, 2017

The holidays are a time of celebration, but for many they are also a time to remember our loved ones who are no longer with us.

Locals will have the opportunity to remember those loved ones together on Dec. 11 at Advent Lutheran Church in LaGrange. The annual holiday service of remembrance was started by a support group for bereaved parents more than 30 years ago and has since expanded to include all of those who have experienced loss.

“The Compassionate Friends met once a month, and it was bereaved families, bereaved parents,” said Mike Pauley, who will serve as the featured speaker at this year’s event. “People would just get in, and they would support each other. How they were dealing with their child’s death. Things that they were going through. It was certainly just people listening, but it was also people sharing inspiration and faith stories, I’m sure. Then what happened was they decided to have a Christmas service, and it was in memory of the children.”

This year will be the first year that a sibling will speak on their loss, though many parents are still expected to be in attendance at the service, which is open to the public.

“We want them to know that we want to honor their child and honor life, and they are welcome,” Pauley said. “If you know someone who would benefit, that would like to celebrate their child at this time, please tell them about the service because we’ve never had someone show up at the service and were not glad they came.”

Local singer Kevin Dunn is scheduled to perform.

Longing for Light in the Darkness is scheduled to take place on Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m. at Advent Lutheran Church at 1416 Vernon Road. Anyone who would like to remember a lost loved one is invited to attend.