By Jan Kahle, Sorrowful Mother Shrine
Many people are drawn to the Sorrowful Mother Shrine for comfort when they have experienced a loss. The quiet, peaceful surroundings and the consolation of a Mother make a perfect combination for healing from loss.
When we lose a loved one, a home, a job or our health, we often feel that we are the only ones struggling through it. But we are not alone. Sharing our burdens does not take away the pain, but it does make the trauma bearable.
Recently, the Sorrowful Mother Shrine in Bellevue, Ohio, where Missionaries of the Precious Blood are in ministry, was given the opportunity to shoulder some of the sorrow when area Catholics received the news that their beloved church buildings would be razed.
Although the buildings have been mainly unused for over ten years, their presence was a distinct reminder of the possibility of being used once again. To hear that the buildings would be torn down was a painful reminder of the loss the parishioners have endured.
From this sorrow, steps were taken to make Reed Assumption Church remembered and honored even after it is gone. Some dedicated former parishioners arranged to rework benches from Assumption into new sanctuary seating for the old shrine chapel. With great care and painstaking attention, the Holy Spirit window from the ceiling of Assumption was removed and relocated in the Shrine Pilgrim Center. (Some work is still to be done.) Both additions to the shrine are beautiful and inspiring!
By sharing the loss of Reed Assumption Church in this way with the pilgrims who visit the shrine, these faith-filled parishioners have allowed comfort to come from loss and peace to fill the hearts of many.