My friend Lory has a special passion for bringing hope to people who have been affected by suicide. This is a vital part of what it means to live into community with all that has life, especially with people who are traveling through some pretty difficult places in their journey. Lory is faithful to walk alongside those who have been affected by suicide, and her own experience of having lost a loved one to suicide is part of her inspiration and motivation to help others. She is a strong woman with a compassionate spirit that leaves all who spend time with her feeling empowered to bring hope and healing to others.
Lory's ministry called "Survivors United In Hope" is headquartered out of the building of the United Methodist Church of Wellsboro; and for her the church building is like a hub for her mission of hope because she is in the process of constructing a county wide structure of support which is soon to include teachers, firefighters, police officers, clergy, and others.
Already she's working with a local book store called "From My Shelf Books and Gifts" on East Avenue in Wellsboro. From My Shelf Books and Gifts carries books on suicide grief as well as a helpful paper flyer which provides a list of information to make books for survivors of a loved one's suicide easily accessible.
On this paper flyer is written the following; "This is just a sample list of books available on these subjects. From My Shelf Books and Gifts is committed to being a resource and a safe place for people in our community to explore these topics and talk about their experiences. We want to be sure you get the books you need to help in any way possible. Please feel comfortable asking anyone on our staff for these books."
I count it as a great encouragement to see that networks of hope and healing are being made and strengthened under Lory's leadership as she boldly lives into her call and her passion.
At the heart of Lory's work with people who have been affected by suicide is this message: You are not alone; and there is hope.
Finding God, self, and community in wild spaces. The better we know our wild neighbors the more we'll discover ourselves.
A vision informed by Henry David Thoreau’s interpretation of sauntering, Jesus’ understanding of neighbor, Aldo Leopold’s concept of thinking like a mountain, Rachel Carson’s prophetic voice and John Muir’s way of writing about wild neighbors with such poetic words.