Vernon retreat for grievers offers widowers ‘New Hope’

Registration is open

  • Apr. 6, 2018 1:30 p.m.

The house is rattling and empty.The bills and sympathy cards sit in a stack, unopened. The helpful phone calls are few and far between.

Whether your spouse passed away a month ago or a few years ago, you know that you need support and help.

The New Hope for Widowers retreat provides support, encouragement, and educational workshops to benefit widows and widowers. It takes courage to attend a retreat for grievers, but the overwhelming response from those who come is warm and positive.

The goal is to create a safe place to share, learn, and connect with others who have also been widowed. The event will be held at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Vernon on May 4 and 5.

In the first day of the retreat, Grace Wulff, founder of New Hope, will share the story of beginning this organization when she was a young widow in the middle of her own grief experience.

Guest speaker Karl Janzen will relate his experience of losing his wife Kathy after 51 years of marriage. Following Kathy’s death in 2014, Karl found a measure of comfort and hope as a widower through attending the New Hope retreat.

The musical concert guest this year is Vernon’s own Mark Wensley, who is known for his heartwarming selections and style. Retreat attenders also have a chance to get to know each other in a relaxed setting while sharing refreshments after the evening session.The evening is from 7 – 9 p.m.

Saturday retreat participants attend a general session entitled Understanding the Basic Needs of the Griever, followed by an opportunity to share their individual stories of loss in a small group setting.

At registration, three of the following six workshop topics are chosen: Transitioning to Living Single, Hoping and Coping in the First Year, Complicated Grief, Experiencing Grief as a Man, Christianity and the Griever, and Financial and Estate Needs.

The day will include lunch and a candlelight ceremony of remembrance. That day goes from 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

This retreat is a valuable time to gain knowledge and understanding of the grief process as well as a way to be encouraged and strengthened through common shared experiences.

New Hope’s unique characteristic is that having experienced widowhood themselves, members and volunteers are able to offer empathy and care to those who are mourning the loss of a spouse.

The retreat is organized by the volunteer board of directors and other members who come alongside the newly bereaved as “companions,” while the speakers and workshop leaders are experienced and knowledgeable in each of their particular topics.

To register call the New Hope office at 250-545-6004 or email newhope.bc.ca@gmail.com. To learn more about New Hope visit www.newhope-grief.org.

Virginia Fairbrother

Special to the Morning Star

Just Posted

Charges pending after accident cuts power in Lumby

A single vehicle accident cut power to 1,905 Whitevale and Lumby residents Saturday, July 21

UPDATE: Sentencing hearing set for Coldstream standoff defendant

Kelly Blake Torvik will appear in Vernon Law Courts July 24 for sentencing

Motorcyclist taken to hospital following crash near Vernon

Extent of injuries not yet known following motorcycle in ditch on Commonage Road Sunday, July 22

Okanagan Wildfires: An afternoon update on wildfires and evacuations

A Sunday afternoon look at the major wildfires impacting the Okanagan and Similkameen.

All-Indigenous teams break new ground, making BC Games history

This is the first time there have been dedicated Indigenous teams at the BC Summer Games

Vernon poet shines bright light on struggle with homelessness

Book launch for John La Greca’s Homeless Memorial is at Gallery Vertigo July 21

The Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw people signed an agreement-in-principle with the B.C. government

The signing ceremony, at the Eliza Archie Memorial School, was 25 years in the making

Canada to resettle dozens of White Helmets and their families from Syria

There are fears the volunteers would become a target for government troops

Francesco Molinari wins British Open at Carnoustie

It is his first win at a major and the first by an Italian

Government sets full-time salary range for Justin Trudeau’s nanny

At its top range, the order works out to a rate of $21.79 per hour, assuming a 40-hour work week

Mediation talks break off in casino strike

Gateway and BCGEU have no new date set for mediation

Most Read