Often, when I bring up the subject of spirituality, inspiration, or faith with patient advocacy groups, the response I receive is lukewarm or even negative. As important as these elements are to sucessfully coping with any physical challenge, some people simply do not “get it.”
Others, however, do. And one major Alzheimer’s disease advocacy group is embracing the topic of inspiration and advocacy in a unique and wonderful way.
November 9-11, 2012, The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (www.alzfdn.org) will “engage local organizations across the U.S. to participate in the National Candle Lighting Ceremony by holding inspirational, non-denominational candle lighting ceremonies in their communities,” says Joana Casas, Communications Specialist at the AFA.
The ceremonies usually include a recitation of remembrance of people who have died from Alzheimer’s disease and honor for those who are currently struggling with it, as well as readings by religious leaders of various denominations. People whose lives have been touched by dementia, including caregivers, will also participate. The events are wonderful ways for people to meet others living with the same challenges, burdens, and issues, whether they have the disease themselves or care for someone who does. More information about the ceremonies, how to find one in your area, or how to organize one can be found through the AFA at www.afzdn.org , or 1-866-232-8484.
Candle light is profound, deep with meaning, warmth, grace, and power. We incorporate candle lighting into our religious rituals, holidays, and other celebrations. We appreciate the beauty of a candle and the calm that can fall over us as we hold one besides someone who is also holding one. How fitting that one way to join together during this National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, is to light a candle for our loved ones, for us, for those who went before and those who remain.
Blessings for the day,