Annual TCF Christmas Candlelight Remembrance Service

Posted: 13 July, 2014

The Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting unites family and friends around the globe in lighting candles for one hour to honor the memories of the sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, and grandchildren who left too soon. As candles are lit at 7:00 p.m. local time, hundreds of thousands of persons commemorate and honor the memory of all children gone too soon.

Now believed to be the largest mass candle lighting on the globe, the 17th annual Worldwide Candle Lighting, a gift to the bereavement community from The Compassionate Friends, creates a virtual 24-hour wave of light as it moves from time zone to time zone. Started in the United States in 1997 as a small internet observance, but has since swelled in numbers as word has spread throughout the world of the remembrance. Hundreds of formal candle lighting events are held and thousands of informal candle lightings are conducted in homes as families gather in quiet remembrance of children who have died, but will never be forgotten.

The Compassionate Friends and allied organizations are joined by local bereavement groups, churches, funeral homes, hospitals, hospices, children's gardens, schools, cemeteries, and community centers. Services have ranged in size from just a few people to nearly a thousand.

The Worldwide Candle Lighting started in the United States in 1997 as a small Internet observance but has since swelled in numbers as word has spread throughout the world of the remembrance.

Brisbane Christmas Candlelight Remembrance Service

Sunday 8th December 2013
Merthyr Road Uniting Church, 52 Merthyr Road, New Farm Qld 4005
6.15pm for a 6.45pm start

The Brisbane format is one where items submitted by bereaved families are read, their songs are played and central to the evening is the lighting of a candle in memory of each of our children who have died. Those present are invited to write a message to their child on a small card and place it beside a candle which will then be lit. This is a very special evening for bereaved parents and their families as it gives them an opportunity to express their feelings and acknowledge their children in a beautiful, meaningful way – especially helpful at this time of year when Christmas festivities are all around us. We invite members to submit items for inclusion in our Service. Suitable items are poetry, verses, other readings and appropriate songs.

Should you wish to submit a song, please send in a CD of it - however please be aware that the number of songs we can play is limited.

Send in a photo of your child/children for this year's service.
We are planning another slide show of our children at this years' service. If you are planning to attend and would like your child’s/children’s photo in the slide show please submit one either by post or email. Preferable size should be a 6” x 4”, of good quality if possible. Please provide your child’s first, middle and last name and age. If you submitted one last year you will still need to notify the office that you want it included in the slideshow again this year, otherwise it will be removed.  Please note this is only for members who are attending the service.

You are asked to send your item to our postal address, email us or bring it into the Drop-in Centre.  Closing date for songs is Monday 4th November and for all other contributions Monday 11th November. Closing date for your child / children’s photo for the powerpoint slide show is Monday 4th November. If you have any queries, please telephone us on 3254 2657.

The opportunity is offered for a member of the family to read their item, but if that is not possible we do have other people available who are happy to read your item on your behalf. Please advise us when you send in your contribution whom your planned reader is, or if you wish us to organise a reader.

At the completion of the service, we adjourn to the hall where supper is served.

It would be much appreciated if you are able to bring along a plate to share for supper. All bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents and their families are warmly invited to attend this special event.

Past Year Services

Brisbane Candlelight Service Photos: 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010

2013 Brisbane Candlelight Service Video

2009 Brisbane Candlelight Remembrance Service

A special part of the 2010 service was the barbershop quartet, Vortex, singing ‘An Irish Blessing’.  They also sang a selection of songs during supper.

John & Karen Van Raalte at the 2009 Service

Media Stories and Videos on the 2010 Worldwide Candle Lighting...

Candlelighting Remembrance Service Video

Donations to Christmas Hamper

We also ask our members to be generous and supportive in making good quality donations to our Christmas Hamper raffle.

Suitable items are many and varied with some suggestions being—any Christmas type produce (such as non-perishable food lines, decorations, etc) gift items of all descriptions, toys, gift vouchers, groceries or anything you think may be appropriate.

Donations can be brought along to any of our meetings, coffee mornings or to the Drop-in Centre – or should you need a drop off point closer to you, please phone us and we will make arrangements.

Our sincere thanks for your valued support.

Tickets for our Christmas Hamper Raffle will be posted out to members with the next newsletter. The raffle will be drawn after the service on the 9th December.

We offer three prizes, each of which is a hamper made up of donated goods - in previous years these have been excellent hampers and we hope this year’s will be too.

Any support you are able to offer by selling the enclosed tickets will be much appreciated as the funds generated help us to continue to offer our services to grieving families.

Please return all monies and ticket butts (as well as unsold) tickets to our postal address found on the front page of this newsletter by Monday 28th November.

The raffle will be drawn at supper following our Candlelight Remembrance Service on Sunday 16th December.

Rockhampton Christmas Candlelight Remembrance Service

The Compassionate Friends (TCF) Rockhampton will again be holding a Christmas Candlelight Remembrance Service which celebrates and honours the lives of children of all ages who have died. All families who have experienced the death of a child are warmly invited to come along and share in this time of remembering.

Families may also wish to invite extended family members and close friends to share this evening with them.
There are a number of ways for families to be involved.

1. Families are invited to submit photographs of their children for inclusion in a slideshow presentation. (Please submit photographs via email to Judy Shepherd fitzgerald_shepherd@yeahoo.com.au by Sunday, 10th December, 2012.)

2. Families may wish to submit poetry, verses, other readings or songs/music which may have special significance to you and your child which may be read, played or displayed at the service. (Submissions are needed by Sunday, 10th December, 2012.)

3. There will also be a candle lighting for each child who has died.

A light supper will follow and families may like to bring along a plate of food to share.

Place: St David’s Anglican Church,
Simpson St, North Rockhampton
Date: Sunday 23rd December 2012
Time: 7.00pm

For more information, please contact Judy Shepherd on 4927 0222 or email (fitzgerald_shepherd@yahoo.com.au)
or Karen Shillington on 4928 8832 or email (dkshillo1@bigpond.com.au)