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GriefShare is here to help

As some of you may remember, I lost my husband to cancer 23 years ago after a three-year battle. I was 43 years old at the time and didn’t know how in the world I was going to survive the journey I had ahead of me.

As I look back and think about these years, God has definitely directed my steps and made a way when I didn’t see a way. By far, this was the most life altering and difficult time I’ve ever experienced in my lifetime.

If you have had such a loss, it may be hard for you to feel optimistic about the future right now. If you’ve lost a spouse, child, family member, or friend, you’ve probably found there are not many people who understand the deep hurt you feel. This can be a confusing time when you feel isolated and have many questions about things you’ve never faced before.

If you have experienced a life-altering death, whether it has been recent or several years ago, I believe GriefShare can be beneficial to you. Many people in the Natchez/Vidalia and surrounding area have taken advantage of this program over these 11 years.  I certainly didn’t know after my husband died how much I needed a program like this to help me work through my grief.

Twelve years after my husband’s death, my church, Parkway Baptist, began GriefShare. GriefShare is a 13-week program where for two hours a week, we meet and hear a video of pastors, professional counselors and grief experts, some of which you may recognize, such as Dr. Bill Bright, Michael Card, Joni Eareckson Tada, Ruth Graham, Anne Graham Lotz, Dr. E.V. Hill, H. Norman Wright, Zig Ziglar, Dr. Paul David Tripp among others.

We have a Study Guide that a person takes home, takes video notes and looks through during the week; we also talk about the topics discussed in the video.

A few topics we cover are:

  • Is this normal?
  • A new identity
  • What ifs
  • Ambushes of grief
  • Grief and your relationships
  • Loneliness
  • When to go through your loved one’s belongings
  • Why?
  • Guilt, anger and regret
  • PTSD
  • Stuck
  • Heaven

We have rules in GriefShare. A couple of the main rules are: confidentiality; we agree that whatever is spoken in GriefShare is not shared outside of our group. Another important one is that a person is never forced to talk in GriefShare; no one will be called on to speak.

We have others besides me who are facilitators in GriefShare; my husband Glenn, Danny and Judy Richards and Susan Marlow.

We do encourage wearing a mask.  We will have tables set up where we will be able to social distance.

You are welcome to sign up for our Parkway Baptist Church GriefShare 13-week sessions at www.griefshare.org or by calling me with questions or to sign up at 601-807-9738.

GriefShare will begin Tuesday, March 2, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Come to the lower parking lot at Parkway Baptist Church where you can access the room called “The Oasis.”

I’m also excited to tell you that Vickie Stowers will be facilitating a GriefShare group at Assumption Catholic Church beginning Thursday, July 1 and meeting from 10 a.m. to noon.

You are welcomed to sign up online at www.griefshare.org or call Assumption Catholic Church to sign up.

Debbie Mizell is a Natchez resident and member of Parkway Baptist GriefShare.