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Praying Through Grief: Healing Prayer Services for Those Who Mourn [Paperback]

By Mauryeen O'Brien (Author)
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Item Number 130305  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   110
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 11" Width: 8.53" Height: 0.38"
Weight:   0.86 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jul 31, 1997
Publisher   Ave Maria Press
ISBN  0877936293  
EAN  9780877936299  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
20 brief, practical services combining prayer, meditation, scripture, and song, as well as a small ritual which helps draw participants into the process. Each service is centered on a theme, and specific suggestions are given for occasions on which particular services might be used e.g. Spring, Mother's Day, Thanksgiving, etc. The services can be easily implemented in a variety of settings (parish, senior citizen clubs, small Christian communities, and family gatherings), and allow anyone to organize prayer services designed specifically for those wrestling with grief. Praying Through Grief allows participants to acknowledge the pain they feel, to relive cherished memories, and to move toward healing. There is reason for hope, these services remind the participants; as surely as spring follows winter, new meaning and beauty can emerge from pain.

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More About Mauryeen O'Brien

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Sister Mauryeen O'Brien has used this program with many grief support groups and frequently lectures on the topic of grieving, recovering, and growingafter the death of a loved one.

Mauryeen O'Brien currently resides in Hartford. Mauryeen O'Brien was born in 1930.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Healing all wounds...  Jul 9, 2005
In her introduction, Mauryeen O'Brien talks about our need to go through a grief process after losing loved ones. While this may seem exceedingly simple an observation, in fact denial is a big part of grief, and the idea that we need to grieve can be one of the things denied both before and during the time we might lose a loved one.

There is no single approach to follow; even people within the same communities and faith traditions will find varying things involved in the grief process -- every person is an individual, after all, including each person grieving and each person lost. However, there are some parts of commonality in the grieving process, particularly within cultures. In our Western culture, most often 'prayer and ritual can bring a sense of balance and peace. They give us an opportunity to say goodbye, to express our pain, to adjust to a transition, to remember our loved ones, and to place those "remembrances" in the context of the present.' For those in the Christian traditions, to whom this text is addressed, there is the added element of hope in the grieving process that recognises sacred aspects.

O'Brien includes simple yet powerful liturgies and prayer services for seasonal, holiday and general occasions. There are six pieces for spring and summer, including celebrations of life of particular use around Easter, Mother's Day and Father's Day. In the fall and winter there are five services, that address the holidays of Christmas and Thanksgiving, as well as the starker times of winter and Lent.

The final section contains useful examples of services to follow on key events not specifically tied to the calendar - the anniversary of the death, anniversary of birth, life changes (job change, moving to a new home, etc.). There are also examples of pieces to be used at any time.

The grieving process is unpredictable - while it has identifiable aspects (a la Kubler-Rossian five stages, among other paradigms), even these fall short of providing quantifiable predictive capability to know how fast the grieving process will take, and how the cycle through the stages will progress. In recognition of this, O'Brien's works can be used in parish settings, by small groups, in family settings or by individuals alone.

The ideas contained in the liturgies come from familiar themes - the parable 'the pearl of great price', natural images like moist clay or permanent rocks, and other images give the reader/pray-er substance to hang onto. The liturgies strive to incorporate ideas that one should celebrate life in the face of death while recognising the loss.

One very useful aspect of this book is the provision of participant sheets for each liturgy. Permission is granted by the author for photocopying these one-page guides to be handed out to participants in the prayer services, so that the book may be more readily useful.

This is a good book and a useful book to any who need guidance with planning such services, and any who are grieving themselves.

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