06 May 2011

Christians must not shy away from dealing with death, says Methodist President

* Booklet to be launched at the Christian Resources Exhibition, 10-13 May

Christians must not shy away from dealing with death, says Methodist President The Revd Alison Tomlin, President of the Methodist Conference has said that a faith that shies away from the issue of death is "neither real nor relevant".

Speaking as the Church launches its new booklet A Gift of Remembrance, Alison said: "Everyone is affected by death at some point in their lives and a faith that shies away from these issues would be neither real nor relevant. Because it can be emotionally difficult and painful it's easy to want to put the issue to one side, to try not to think about it or deal with it. But as Christians we believe in a God of hope, a God who is with us even in the valley of the shadow of death."

A Gift of Remembrance is a new booklet offering reflections on death, dying, mourning and loss. It includes Bible passages, prayers and reflections from a variety of authors, including John Donne, Anne Bronte and Major Malcolm Boyd, who was killed in action in France in 1944. The booklet is being launched next week at the Christian Resources Exhibition at Sandown Park in Surrey.

A Gift of Remembrance is ideal for pastoral care and chaplaincy and people are encouraged to share it with friends and family who are mourning. "This booklet is not just for Remembrance Sunday - it's something I know I can give to people who are grieving, as we reflect on the experience together," added Alison.

The booklet is also ideal for small-group and personal reflection. It's the latest in the highly successful A Gift of... series, including A Gift of Peace, which has already sold nearly 15,000 copies. It can be purchased from www.methodistpublishing.org.uk at the price of £5 for 50 copies (plus postage and packing). 

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