Windom group to participate in Worldwide Candle Lighting service
WINDOM -- The Windom chapter of The Compassionate Friends (TCF) will be participating in the 16th Worldwide Candle Lighting service to remember children who have passed away.
The event will be 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Cottonwood Historical Society, Windom, with refreshments to follow.
The service honors and remembers children who have died and unites families and friends from around the globe annually on the second Sunday of December.
"We invite people to take a little time to remember their children with others who truly understand," said Carol Hartman, who has experienced the loss of a child and is helping coordinate the event.
The candle lighting is open to all who wish to participate, whether by attending the service or lighting a candle in the quiet of their homes.
"It can be hard to fit in time to remember the children we have lost in the bustle and business of the season," Hartman said. "This (event) is to reserve a time to remember the child that shared our lives and whom we still love."
The event will coincide with the Cottonwood County Historical Society's Festival of Trees, at which TCF will have a special tree dedicated to children who have passed away and their families.
People are invited to arrive early and make an ornament for the TCF tree in memory of the child they lost.
"They can add photos, ideally two by two inch, and bring other mementos if they want," said Hartman.
The Worldwide Candle Lighting is believed to be the largest mass candle lighting in the world. It creates a 24-hour wave of light as it moves from time zone to time zone.
Hundreds of formal candle lighting events are hosted and thousands of candles lit informally in the homes of families as they gather in quiet to remember the children who have died.
"The Worldwide Candle Lighting is one way that we try to bring light out of darkness during this difficult time of the year," TCF Executive Director Patricia Loder said in a press release. "Like a ring, this circle of light surrounding the globe represents that there is no beginning and no end for the love we carry for our children."
TCF is a non-profit, self-help support group for families who have experienced the death of a child of any age from any cause, whether recently or in the past.
The Windom chapter of TCF has monthly meetings at 7 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at the Business, Arts and Recreation Center (BARC) in Windom.
As the national's largest self-help bereavement organization, TFC has more than 650 chapters in the US, with sister organizations in at least 30 countries around the world.