Accompanying the Bereaved

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast extended a warm greeting to Rabbi Dr. Reuven Bulka who spoke to a packed room of people at the Diocesan Centre on Wednesday, September 19th on the topic of accompanying the bereaved. Many people involved in pastoral care in parish and hospital communities came to enjoy a rich and thought-provoking evening on this important topic.

Well known and respected as a wise and just spiritual leader in the Ottawa community, Rabbi Bulka drew on his latest book, Turning Grief Into Joy, as well as good humor, wise insight, and the painful personal loss of a beloved child, to explore things that are helpful to people in times of grief, and things which are not helpful and may even be harmful at such a vulnerable time in life. Rabbi Bulka was careful to point out that while there may be recognizable signs that a persons grief is becoming problematic for them, people grieve in a variety of very different ways and some for a few months while for others a grieving period can last for years. It is key that those who are supporting them respect this and express sincere care, emphasize good listening, and offer helpful practical support.

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast extends
a warm welcome to Rabbi Bulka

Rabbi Bulka offers wise counsel during an interchange facilitated by Mrs. Carol Kuzmochka (right)

Rabbi Bulkas presentation was followed by a rich interchange with the participants, facilitated by Mrs. Carol Kuzmochka. People explored their own experiences, questions and insights, more deeply, with the help of Rabbi Bulkas wise counsel. The session concluded with an invitation, extended by Msgr. Kevin Beach, vicar general of the diocese, for all interested persons to join in a session of ongoing dialogue and exploration about current needs in pastoral care in the diocese. This will take place at St. Margaret Mary Parish, Fairbarn Ave. on Saturday, Nov. 17th beginning at 9:30 AM and ending around noon. Those attending are asked to kindly register prior, (613)738-5025 x217 or [email protected]