Serving the widowed, separated and divorced



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Divorced and Widowed Ministry in the News

Beginning Experience International Ministry, Inc., Beginning Experience teams, or individuals involved in the ministry may be featured in print or electronic media articles about grief, the loss of a marriage, or single-parent families.  Here are some of these stories.

Beginning Experience offers to heal the hurting

They have bonded through the shared experience of loss either by death, separation or divorce. From July 25-27, 110 team leaders of Beginning Experience International Ministry, Inc., held their biennial convention, “Celebrating the Vision in a Time of Change,” commemorating the group’s 40th anniversary.

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International Ministry Helps Widowed, Divorced Move Beyond Grief

by Denis Grasska

Published in the October 2012 issue of "The Southern Cross"

SAN DIEGO, CA - Cathy Savel had been married for 33 years when, one day, her husband had a heart attack at the gym. He was on a respirator for four days, and then he died. That was in April 2004.

That same month, Susan Fonss experienced a similar feeling of loss when her husband of 34 years divorced her.

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Beginning Experience celebrates 30 years in LA

From The Tidings

Wednesday, 25 May 2011 18:02

Trained peer ministers who have experienced a similar loss form the team which primarily facilitates three-day grief resolution workshops and provides pre- and post-weekend support programs, such as “Coping With Life Alone” and “Continued Beginnings.”

The Beginning Experience® ministry was founded by St. Mary of Namur Sister Josephine Stewart who, with her divorced friend, Jo Lamia, developed the original weekend program in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1974. Today, teams in more than 100 communities across the United States, Canada, England, Ireland, Scotland, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore facilitate retreats and other activities.

To read more, click here.

Beginning Experience - Alexandria, Louisiana

Beginning Experience of Alexandria, Louisiana has posted upcoming weekend programs on the community calendars of the city's TV stations.

To view the listing that appears on CBS Channel 5, KALB, click here.

Church's ministry to those who've lost a spouse: The opportunities, challenges

By Emily Stimpson

From Our Sunday Visitor Newsweekly, June 26, 2011

The apostle James made it all seem so simple.
In his canonical epistle, he wrote: "Religion that is pure and undefiled before our God and Father is this: care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained from the world" (1 :27). Sounds pretty straightforward, right?
Our Sundasy Visitor photo

But it's not. At least not necessarily. Just ask those in the Church charged with carrying out one of those tasks ministering to the widowed - and they'll tell you that honoring that command isn't nearly as simple as it sounds. In fact, they'll likely tell you that honoring it happens to be one of the Church's more difficult pastoral challenges. How can something that seems so simple be so hard?

Unchanging needs
Answering that question starts with understanding the needs of the widows and widowers themselves, the needs that the Church must strive to meet. Two thousand years may have passed since S1. James first endorsed caring for the widowed, but when it comes to the spiritual needs that such care is designed to meet, not much has changed. To start with, those who have lost their spouse still need help coping with grief. "You haven't just lost your spouse," said Steve Smith, who lost his wife four years ago to a sudden illness and now helps lead a group for grieving spouses in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. "You've lost your future. VVhat you thought was your future is gone. You've also lost your past. My wife was with me 40 years. There aren't many people who've known me that long."

To readmore, click here.

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