Berwick Advertiser Thought For The Week - Tell Your Story Before You Die


As light draws in and Northumberland’s Covid restrictions increase our thoughts turn to life and death matters.

A grave-digger told me in a pub ‘I feel sad when someone is lowered into the grave who has never told their story’.

That gravedigger inspired me to write down memories of my life.

 Next month I lead a retreat. reduced to six socially distanced people, at Holy Island’s Open Gate Retreat Centre, on Dying Well. We will imagine we are stuck in an airport departure lounge. An airport officer has informed us we cannot embark on the departing plane because we carry too much luggage. So we get rid of excess baggage and  spend in time in various departure lounge parlours: parlours  such as treasured photos, gifts,  recordings, flowers and scents, poetry, music, forgiveness and so on.

 When we have told our stories, said sorry for hurts we have caused or for our reactions to hurts others have caused us, savoured great moments and become aware of sentiments such as gratitude, peace and love, we are ready to make our departure.

 The Bible says God writes a book with our names in it, and that God gives us a new name. How exciting!

Readers who would like to do a DIY retreat at home can order my book Before We Say Goodbye: preparing for a good death from my web site 

Posted at 14:36pm on 17th October 2020
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