First Baptist Church Geneva Pastor Ed Scott shares ways to cope with holiday grief

For the town of Geneva Christmas day will be difficult as it marks one year since the passing of three teens, Cassidy Dunn, Emilee Fain, and Addyson Martin.
Published: Dec. 23, 2020 at 5:56 PM CST
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - The holidays are known to bring joy as families and friends gather, but for many it brings heartache as some loved ones are no longer here.

First Baptist Church of Geneva Pastor Ed Scott said during this time of year there is a subtle suggestion people should be happy because it’s Christmas, but for some it is too difficult.

He shares three ways to cope with holiday grief, the first is grieving.

“People need to understand that if they have had a loss, they really do need to grieve it,” Pastor Scott said. “The first thing is people need to give themselves permission to grieve. It is a myth that everything should be perfect at Christmas.”

Pastor Scott said this is a time to turn to your faith.

“If you are a person of faith, that you really ought to be leaning very hard into your faith and if you’re not a person of faith maybe it’s time to look at that or maybe rekindle if you just have kind of not been active in your faith,” Pastor Scott said.

Lastly, he said it is important to not face the journey of grief alone.

“There is always a kind of a temptation for people that are grieving a loss or the anniversary of a loss in the holiday times to just kind of pull back, to withdraw, to not socialize, to not talk to their friends, to not depend on their friends and that’s, I think, a big mistake,” Pastor Scott said. “You should not go it alone.”

It is often difficult when there is an anniversary of the passing of a loved one. For the town of Geneva, Christmas will be difficult as it marks one year since the passing of three teens, Cassidy Dunn, Emilee Fain, and Addyson Martin.

Pastor Scott understands how difficult this day will be for his community.

“We love you, we care about you, we may not know what to say but we want you to understand you are not alone and folks are thinking about you are praying for you,” Pastor Scott said.

Pastor Scott said the Christmas story originates in difficult circumstances and that it is a time to remember that hope comes out of the darkest hour.

“The people that know you and love you, want to be there and they won’t have all of the answers obviously, but they want to do anything they can for you,” Pastor Scott said.

If you have made progress, a turning point in life could be establishing a new tradition during this time as an outlet of the grief and to honor the loss of the loved one.

“That’s very much a healing when you remember them in that way,” Pastor Scott said.

He also says it’s important to remember that people grieve and process at their own pace and in different ways.

Pastor Scott said for those who are supporting someone who is facing grief this season to not feel like they need to have all of the answers – because they don’t, but to still come along side them.

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