A Ceremonial Procession Honors a Mother’s Love


After surrounding their mother with love during hospice care until her passing, 

Mary Alice’s adult children walked beside her as she exited the care of Our Lady of Peace. 

The Hand of God Shall Hold You was sung as they processed. 

It was a difficult, but beautiful moment for a family united in love and faithfulness. Staff members who chose to join the procession recall the serenity of the experience, and the beauty in honoring a mother’s love and a life well lived. It was truly a gift.

It’s hard to envision what will bring you closure and give you peace in the sanctity of a moment like this, as you experience the passing of someone you love. Death rituals are for the living, helping people process their loss prior to the funeral service, and acclimate to the dramatic changes associated with the loss. They are unique to every family, and some families may find them unnecessary because of what will take place at the funeral or memorial service. But, this inspiring story touched our hearts enough to share it with you, along with this small list of other ways people have honored their loved ones in the moments after they pass: 

  • Playing or singing a favorite hymn or meaningful song. 
  • Ringing church bells.
  • In the Jewish tradition, immediate family members tear a piece of their clothing as a symbol of the loss and grief they are experiencing.

We are grateful to Mary Alice’s family for allowing us to share their story. You are in our thoughts this Mother’s Day. 

What has brought you comfort at the time a loved one’s passing? We invite you to share your experience our Facebook page.