Traditionally, Christmas is a time for us to celebrate with family and friends. This year we're all approaching the festive season with a degree of uncertainty, but for those who are bereaved, it's a time when the loss of a loved one is often felt even more.
Even though some things this Christmas will have to be different, St Catherine's Hospice wants to remind people that they're not alone if they're missing someone special.
The local hospice is holding an online Tree of Light remembrance service to bring people together to remember their loved ones and reflect on precious memories with others who understand.
Taking place on Sunday 13 December 2020 at 4pm, the hospice's well-loved Tree of Light service will be available - without cost or requirement to book in advance - via the St Catherine's Hospice Facebook page (St Catherine's Hospice, Crawley), and on the hospice's website at: www.stch.org.uk/treeoflight
The online service will offer the same programme of reflective, non-religious readings, stories and music, as the physical service, and the local charity hopes it will bring people some support and comfort.
Lisa Rainier, Spiritual Care Lead and Chaplain at St Catherine's said, "By conducting the service through Facebook Live, and on our St Catherine's website, we hope it'll be easy for you to take part from the comfort and safety of your own home and I'd encourage you to join us in whatever way feels most meaningful to you. You might want to light a candle and snuggle up with a warm drink, or have a favourite photograph or keepsake to hand. You could invite family and friends to watch the service with you from their own homes, wherever they are. Whatever you choose, please take this special time to remember and reflect on your precious memories knowing that many others are doing the same."
Although St Catherine's Tree of Light service is free for anyone joining, and there is no pressure to donate, if you wish to make a donation in memory of someone special, this would be much appreciated. Your in-memory donation will give another local family a priceless gift - a last Christmas together that's the best it can possibly be.
If you feel you would like to donate in honour of someone you love you can donate online at: www.stch.org.uk/xmas or by calling 01293 447361.