Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington
Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane
P.O. Box 1453, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302
Letters to the Editor
(From the April 16, 2015 edition of the Inland Register)
The Inland Register welcomes letters to the editor. Letters should be no longer than 500 words. Letters must be signed, with address and phone number for contact, but names will be withheld upon request. Letters may be edited for length or clarity. Remember to be charitable.
Send letters to:
Sooner or later, every marriage ends, either through death or divorce. For many couples, the vows they take to stay together until death end all too soon, and the surviving spouse is left to grieve. For other couples, despite their own efforts and the efforts of others to resolve fundamental problems, the marriage ends in divorce, and two people grieve.
Beginning Experience offers quality, copyrighted grief resolution programs presented by trained peer ministers who follow the example of Christ in reaching out to others who are suffering the pain of loss. They share their own losses and listen compassionately as they walk with those who are beginning their journey toward healing.
The program was developed by Sister Josephine Stewart, a family therapist, and her divorced friend, Jo Lamia, who attended a Marriage Encounter weekend in 1973 with the intention of developing a program for engaged couples. During the weekend, Lamia adapted the Marriage Encounter process to address her own issues from her divorce and came to a peaceful closure on the end of her marriage. Her notebook became the seed and the process for the Beginning Experience ministry.
Rooted in the Paschal Mystery, Beginning Experience reaches out to men and women of all faiths in the United States and several countries throughout the world. Independent research published in the Journal of Divorce and Remarriage shows that the impact of the Beginning Experience weekend is more profound and longer-lasting than that of support and informational groups for the single-again.
Participants in the Beginning Experience Weekend acquire more tools to deal with the pain of the loss, resulting in healthier family relationships, a strengthened spiritual life, and increased emotional health and self-respect. They receive validation that such feelings as denial, anger, depression after the death or divorce are “normal,” and find an enhanced ability to contribute to employer, church and community.
The current Beginning Experience team of Spokane was recognized by then-Bishop Cupich, and has been offering programs in the area since 2007.
We offer a pre-weekend “Coping with Being Alone Again” class, the Beginning Experience Weekend, and a post-weekend class, “Continued Beginnings.” Participants in the coping class are not required to attend the weekend, nor is the class a prerequisite for the weekend.
If you have suffered the loss of a spouse we urge you to register for our Beginning Experience Weekend at the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center by calling (509) 534-1797. Please share this with others who are hurting after the loss of a spouse and in need of healing.
Ann Borgman, Otis Orchards, Wash.
© The Catholic Diocese of Spokane. All Rights Reserved