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New Beginnings Grief Support Ministry

Mission Statement.

The mission of New Beginnings Grief Support Ministry of Saint Gall’s Catholic Community is to provide support for those of us who have suffered the death of a loved one. The primary focus is to assist our grieving members to move on to live a life with meaning and joy.


Some Definitions

Bereavement: The root of the word is “reave” which means “to tear apart”. When we lose a loved one, it often feels like chunks have been ripped from our heart and soul. Though it most intensely affects those who have had a direct relationship with the lost loved one, it also affects everyone in our community as members of the Body of Christ.

Grief: The word “grief” has the Latin word “burden” as its root. Grief is the ongoing burden of the wound caused by bereavement. Again, those with a close relationship to the lost loved one feel the burden of the loss most strongly. This burden is lifelong and will never completely be relieved, though it will diminish over time. One does not “get over” grief, one must “go through” it. As a community we can participate in their grief by lessening the burden by acknowledging their pain and offering comfort wherever possible.



The primary goal of New Beginnings is to provide support for all members of Saint Gall Catholic Community during all stages of grief. New Beginnings will offer group and individual support as appropriate. New Beginnings will also proactively encourage our community’s support.

While most bereaved members of our community will qualify for group or individual support there may be some whose grief is complicated by other factors such depression or anxiety, or for whom individual or group support does not seem to help. In this case, New Beginnings will refer them to their health care provider and/or a licensed therapist experienced with treating complicated grief in addition to the support provided by New Beginnings.


These support services focus on tools, methods, and mutual support to manage the burden of grief. While there is a spiritual component to this service, it will not be a place for spiritual guidance and is not a prayer group.


Group Support: New Beginnings will offer facilitated grief support groups to serve the Saint Gall Catholic Community. These groups will include both time limited structured support groups and separate ongoing support groups. Each group will have a specific focus and will be offered as the need arises. Such groups will be designed to serve those with specific losses such as: Spouse or adult child, Parents with loss of a young child.

    • Widows and widowers who have lost a spouse by death and are parenting children.
    • Children who have experienced the loss of a loved one.
    • Women only, or men only grief support groups.
    • Women and/or men who are bearing the grief of abortion.

Individual Support: A support group is usually not appropriate following a very recent loss. However individual support will be available for individuals or families who need relief for the new, intense pain they are experiencing. This will include individual sessions until a group becomes available or until the symptoms of grief are reduced to a more manageable level.

Community Support: There are other areas where Community Support will be essential for creating a healing environment for those who have lost a loved one. Some of these are:

  • Recruiting ministers/facilitators for the support groups. It is essential that bilingual ministers be available to serve where needed. New Beginnings will provide training and support of new facilitators as needed.
  • Presentations and website postings with useful information for the general Community to be helpful for those suffering the pain and burden of grief.
  • Presentations and individual support for those who are anticipating the death of a loved one. This may already be available for those under hospice care.
  • Openness to suggestions to improve services from all individuals and ministries of Saint Gall Catholic Community. Coordination and cooperation with other ministries are essential.

These goals are designed to address the needs of the community by providing an appropriate response to the grieving members of our community. Success will be dependent on the dedication of the New Beginnings ministry. The prayerful support of the Saint Gall Catholic Community is essential.


Father, we pray that you fill our hearts to overflowing with your love. The love that heals all, the love that nourishes us, and the love that invites us to love one another.

The love that we have for our lost loved ones is a reflection of your love for us. Experiencing the painful loss of our loved ones can be almost unbearable. Help us to be open to the gift of your joy to balance and relieve the weight of our grief.

We ask this in the name of Jesus who sent His Holy Spirit to guide, comfort and heal us.


For more information, please contact Chuck Scherl

Phone or text: 858.922.7870