Bereavement has been in everyone’s mind during the pandemic. The National Day of Reflection, coordinated by the charity Marie Curie and officially supported by the Church of England, is a special day to reflect together on loss and grief. Local churches can play a part. Here’s how.
On 23 March 2022, it will be two years since the first UK lockdown. Whether a death is recent or long ago, and whether or not it was due to Covid-19, every year there are millions of people bereaved. The restrictions we’ve all been living under have meant that many people have had to grieve without friends and family around them.
Following last year’s successful first National Day of Reflection, Marie Curie, a charity that supports people around a terminal diagnosis, is once again spearheading a day to acknowledge grief and loss. The Church of England is one of several organisations supporting it, and the Church of England Life Events team are again providing some additional, bespoke resources for parishes to use if they want to join in.
This year there will be activities happening throughout the day on the 23 March, beginning with dawn services and ending with buildings being “lit up” in yellow or people putting lit candles in their windows.
The focus of the day will still be a minute’s silence at 12 noon, but there will also be ‘Walls of Reflection’ for the first time this year; simple spaces where people can leave a photograph, write a name or a memory, gather and support each other in our grief.
How can my church get involved?
These are several ways you might join in as a church – even just doing one or two things will help the whole campaign to reach bereaved people in your community. Find out more on the Life Events website here.
Churches can register their interest in being involved on the Marie Curie website here – and there are practical ideas developed by the Life Events Team, including links to posters, prayers and logos here.
If your church or benefice is on social media please tag us and use the hashtag #DayofReflection to share what you’re doing. You can find the Diocese of Norwich social media handles below: