The Pastoral Care Committee offers these resources on loneliness and grief as we journey individually and collectively during this time of pandemic, separation, and isolation. Perhaps you have other resources, and if so, we welcome them for inclusion.
An interfaith resource created by Brother David Steindl-Rast, Benedictine monk and dear friend of David Whyte (a favorite poet; see him as a resource below).
There are many links to explore but one that may be of interest in the drop-down menu: practices then practices for grateful living. Listen to a guided meditation by Jack Kornfield, a respected Buddhist teacher. Watch the “Blessings” video with Brother David, along with other treasures. Or click practices then “A Grateful Day” video narrated by Brother David.
Among their blogs is one entitled “Remember, You Are Not Alone”.
A website supported by the Spiritual Care Association and Healthcare Chaplaincy Network, both organizations that provide an integration of spiritual care through clinical practice, research and education engaging chaplains in various healthcare settings, including first responders and hospice; social workers; nurses; other interdisciplinary clinicians. You may “chat with a chaplain” or go to links on such topics as self-care; coping with coronavirus; for caregivers; prayers and meditations (interfaith).
Their website opens to “Compassion in the time of Coronavirus”
GWISH Is the highly respected George Washington Institute of Spirituality and Health started by Christine Pulchaski, MD. In the Resources drop-down menu, you will find poetry of hope and comfort; resources for managing stress and anxiety; resources for caring for others, along with other topics. I found that some of the links did not open, but listened to Wendell Berry narrate his poem, “The Peace of Wild Things” and heard the gorgeous video of the song: “It Is Well With My Soul”.
https://brenebrown.com Brene Brown, Ph.D., LMSW is a researcher, professor, story-teller who offers a wealth of podcasts, and TED talks on various topics such as vulnerability, loneliness, grief.
MUSIC, comfort in our spiritual passages of loneliness and grief, surrender and loss:
Portland composer Michael Allen Harrison offers music to draw us into serenity. Sign up at michaelallenharrison.com. Or find him on YouTube.
Set in a very different context of course, but these lyrics engage the listener, “Bring Him Home” from Les Miserables sung by Alfie Boet and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tI4jb-Aca9M. Who wouldn’t be moved by the repetition of the words “God on high, hear my prayer, in my need you have always been there. He is young, he’s afraid. Let him rest, heaven blessed. Bring him home, bring him home, bring him home”, (or her or them) which is what we deeply desire in this time of separation.
Michael Hoppe, this Grammy-nominated, Portland-based composer’s albums include Solace and The Poet (two different CDs): https://michaelhoppe.com/ Music that is deep and rich. Some of his music can be found online.
Graceful Passages is a gorgeous CD set. One CD is instrumental only and the accompanying CD is the same music with spoken passages by Ram Dass, Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh, Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, The Very Rev. Alan Jones, and other spiritual mentors. Some of this music (though not narrated) can be found online.
PRAYERS, POETRY, PROSE, AND CONVERSATIONS WITH POETS:
John O’Donohue: https://www.johnodonohue.com/ Some of his poetry accompanied by video can be found online. He is also the author of many books that invite us to journey into the depths of our hearts. His family maintains his website.
David Whyte, a favorite writer, holds conversations with the world from his home on Whidbey Island: https://davidwhyte.com/. Periodic three-session conversations begin again in January. As mentioned above, he is a dear friend of Brother David Steindl-Rast and the late John O’Donohue. This, on loneliness: https://www.thelonelyhour.com/david-whyte. In addition: “The grief of losing a loved one, the need to walk, to remember, to heal when you cannot heal, to remember what you do not wish to remember. The unconscious call for invisible help, and the not knowing consciously, how, in any way, to ask for it, the way everything refuses to console until we are ready for that consolation. The way winter turns to spring” (DW) is described in this poem, Winter Grief: https://findingmichael2000.com/index.php/winter-grief-by-david-whyte
Other poets and prayers: Mary Oliver, Rumi, The Psalms
TED TALK VIDEOS:
You are not alone in your loneliness
We don’t “move on” from grief. We move forward with it | Nora McInerny
The journey through loss and grief | Jason B. Rosenthal
In the Midst of Winter, edited by Mary Jane Moffat offers selections from the literature of mourning.
Final Gifts are written by two hospice nurses, Maggie Callahan and Patric Kelley. A good reference “for understanding how the dying communicate their needs, reveal their feelings and ways they might spend their final moments” – insights that invite our own considerations.
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