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The dead are not under the earth,
They are in the fire dying down,
They are in the moaning rock,
They are in the crying grass,
They are in the forest, they are in the home:
The dead are not dead.  — Birago Diop, 20th century Senegalese poet and storyteller

In this workshop, participants will explore some emotions, experiences, and perceptions that commonly accompany grief. They reflect on personal experiences of grief and share their stories with one another. Together, participants explore the ways in which the grief and mourning practices of Unitarian Universalists are helpful as well as how they might be better and more supportive. The workshop closes with the creation of a list of ways to cope with grief when one’s turn comes.

Send a reminder to participants two or three days ahead of the workshop and include information about preparation from Workshop 3, Handout 1, Looking Ahead to Workshop 4.


This workshop will:

  • Invite participants to consider grief as a universal human experience as well as their own personal experiences of bereavement
  • Engage participants in reflection and discussion of what is and is not helpful and supportive about Unitarian Universalist grief and mourning practices
  • Engage participants in reflection and discussion of what is and is not helpful and supportive about grief and mourning practices in our broader culture
  • Encourage participants to consider a variety of strategies for coping when one has experienced the death of a loved one.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Explore some emotions and perceptions that a bereaved person might experience
  • Consider their personal experiences of grief and mourning
  • Reflect on what is and is not helpful about the bereavement practices and expectations of Unitarian Universalist culture and of the broader culture
  • Name some strategies that help with coping when one has lost a loved one.

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