The loss of a baby is a devastating and traumatic experience for the mother, father and those close to them. And yet the life of a baby who dies before 24 weeks gestation is not recorded with a certificate which leaves the parent with no official recognition of the baby’s life.
The numbers involved are surprising, with approximately one in four pregnancies ending in miscarriage. Many who experience miscarriage are left reeling with little sense of how to commemorate a baby who once held all the promise of a life to be lived.
Events company CCEM is looking to change that – by setting up a series of commemorative services at churches, minsters and cathedrals across the UK. The Saying Goodbye events are the first set of national commemorative services for people who have suffered miscarriage, early term loss or early infant death.
CCEM director Zoe said “We want to provide a place and time for people to come together to acknowledge their loss and offer an opportunity to say a collective goodbye. My husband and I have lost five babies ourselves – we want the Saying Goodbye services to help other couples to say a wonderful goodbye to their children, as every life deserves to be recognised. We want to say our children did exist – they may only have been on this earth for days, weeks or months, but they were truly loved, and will always be missed.”
Birmingham based GP, Dr Ursula Oetiker commented “It is such an important human need to grieve loss and whilst many hospitals, will offer bereavement counselling, there appear to be few opportunities to say goodbye to those babies who die before 24 weeks gestation.“
and actress Martine McCutcheon had this to say “It’s a travesty that miscarriage is often not discussed, and sadly often not publicly recognised. People across the UK are crying out for the Saying Goodbye services, at last a time and a place where women and families can come together to mourn the children they have lost, and publicly say goodbye to them. What a wonderful organisation with an amazing heart.”
The Saying Goodbye events will take place on the following dates:
- Exeter Cathedral, Exeter, Devon – Saturday 15th September – 3pm
- St. Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland – Saturday 22nd September – 3pm
- York Minster, York, North Yorkshire – Saturday 29th September – 1.30pm
- Birmingham Cathedral, Birmingham, West Midlands – Sunday 28th October – 3.30pm
- LLandaff Cathedral, Cardiff, Wales – Saturday 3rd November – 3pm
- St Martin-in-the-Fields, Trafalgar Square, London – Saturday 17th November – 11am
- St Paul’s Cathedral, City of London, London – Saturday 24th November – 5pm
- Bristol Cathedral, Bristol, Gloucestershire – Saturday 8th December – 3.30pm
For more information please visit the Saying Goodbye website – www.sayinggoodbye.org
CCEM is a UK based international events company. They are working free of charge to plan and manage the services. Saying Goodbyes charity partner is the Miscarriage Association, who are the leading charity working in the field of miscarriage.