Faith, Grief, and COVID-19:
Faith, Grief, and COVID-19: A Conversation
ABOUT THE SERIES
The COVID-19 pandemic has generated grief in all of our lives. We have lost jobs, financial security, health, community connections, and the opportunity to gather and celebrate significant milestones such as graduations, weddings, births, and anniversaries. In addition, we are reminded daily of the lives lost to the virus.
These losses raise larger questions for us as Christians. How do we understand and process grief as people of faith? How can we support vulnerable and grieving members of our community while practicing physical distancing? Where can we find hope and joy in this season? This short series of films tackles these questions, inviting viewers to engage in a conversation about faith, grief, and COVID-19.
Over the course of four meetings, participants will gather virtually, watch a film featuring insights from a panel of experts, and engage in discussion questions, reflection, and prayer. You can download the complete Discussion Guide to follow along with the materials and discussion questions, or download each session’s guide individually using the buttons next to each film.
In this film, Sanctuary CEO Daniel Whitehead discusses the circumstances that inspired the creation of this resource, and introduces viewers to the panel of experts featured in the films. These individuals draw upon their knowledge and experience in the fields of counselling psychology, theology, and palliative care while addressing the unique challenges posed by the pandemic.
DISCUSSION 1: HOW DO WE UNDERSTAND GRIEF?
Grief is a multi-faceted reality. It involves our emotions, our spirituality, our relationships, and our ability to make sense of the world. Grief is also dynamic. It changes from day to day, and evolves over time. In this film, our experts examine the experience of grief from multiple perspectives, and highlight the role that culture and faith play in shaping our interpretation of grief.
DISCUSSION 2: HOW DO WE UNDERSTAND GRIEF AS CHRISTIANS?
This film takes a closer look at the presence of grief and the practice of lament in Scripture, and challenges some of the cultural assumptions that inform our expectations regarding sorrow, happiness, and joy. Our experts also discuss the unique sources of wisdom, comfort, and hope found within the Christian faith.
DISCUSSION 3: HOW CAN WE SUPPORT THOSE WHO ARE GRIEVING?
Responding well to grief is a skill that takes time to develop. This film unpacks the social, emotional, and spiritual aspects of our responses to personal and communal losses, inviting viewers to make room for their own grief while growing in the ability to grieve with others.
DISCUSSION 4: WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO SOMEONE EXPERIENCING GRIEF RIGHT NOW?
The unique circumstances of the pandemic are heightening the disorientation and confusion many people experience in the midst of grief. In this film our experts get practical, discussing the importance of presence, empathy, and hospitality in our interactions with individuals processing losses in this season.
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