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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Tips for helping the bereaved

  • Write a short condolence note and share a personal memory of the deceased.
  • Call and visit often.
  • Recognize that recovery takes time.
  • Listen with your heart.
  • Encourage the grieving to accept all of their feelings.
  • Resist any temptation to recite clichés such as "I know how you feel."
  • Make specific invitations and try other occasions if they refuse.
  • Urge caution concerning hasty decisions.
  • Keep them in your prayers.


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