Issue # 95 - November 2022



Lake Oswego, OR. 

Managing Loss and Grief

During the Holiday Season

See related story, below



Nov. 8 - ONLINE


Grief Counseling

Hospice Foundation of America


Nov. 20 and Dec. 4 - ONLINE

Holiday Season

Grief Support Group



Feb. 18 - ONLINE

Third Annual Symposium on

Death and Bereavement Studies

  CE Credit Hours Available

See related story, below


Ongoing Self-Study Course

Adventures Beyond the Body

with William Buhlman

Dia de los Muertos 

If you live in America and engage with any field or practice related to death and dying, you probably lament the lack of death awareness in our culture. Most of us have experienced -- either directly or indirectly -- the denial and medicalization of death.

One way to make friends with the reality of death is to learn about traditions from other cultures that are more death-positive. A good place to start is the Mexican holiday of Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), which is celebrated on November 2. It was traditionally honored by the indigenous people of Latin America, and later absorbed elements of Catholicism after the area was invaded by missionaries and conquistadors. 

Read about creating your own Dia de los Muertos altar HERE, and learn more about the origins of Dia de los Muertos HERE.


Rev. Dr. Terri Daniel, CT, CCTP

End-of-Life Advisor, Interfaith Chaplaincy,

Bereavement and Trauma Support

[email protected]



Are You an Outside-the Box Chaplain?

If you are a professional (or in-training) chaplain who doesn't follow a conventional religious model, please consider joining our PRIVATE Facebook group. Our community includes chaplains who identify as Buddhists, Pagans, Humanists, Atheists, progressive Christians, mystics and reconstructed/deconstructed free thinkers of all kinds.

This is a safe and supportive space to discuss ideas that don't always go over well in traditional chaplaincy circles. Come join our lively discussions! You can find us HERE.  

Grief and Restoration During the Holidays

It's that time again. The holiday season is upon us, and along with merriment and family togetherness, many of us also experience sadness, lonliness and isolation, especially if we are grieving. We all respond to that sadness in different ways, and methods of coping can span a vast spectrum. Some choose to skip the holidays altogether, abandoning traditional family customs that are painful reminders of holidays past. Others continue -- and enhance -- those traditions by including departed loved ones in new rituals specifically designed to bring their presence into the festivities.  THIS ARTICLE may be helpful, and if you need additional support, please consider attending our online holiday season grief support group (see story, below).

Pondering the Death Penalty

In the wake of the recent trial for Nikolas Cruz, who killed 17 people in the Parkland, Florida school shooting, debate about the death penalty has reached new heights. He was sentenced to life in prison, and there is a loud outcry from those who feel that he should be put do death. 

The ACLU has an official statement about its opposition to the death penalty, which you can read HERE. Their points are good, but they fail to address a deeper philosophical question which speaks to an elemental assumption about executing a criminal... the idea that death is a punishment.

If we unpack this idea, it appears to be based on the religious doctrine that a bad person will go to hell, and that will be their punishment. But an enlightened understanding in which there is no hell negates this rationale completely. So what we end up with is a criminal who, via death, escapes actual punishment, and the experience of torment is transferred to his family, who will be grieving his death.

Nikolas Cruz will now spend the rest of his life in prison, where he will experience plenty of suffering and punishment. The other prisoners will certainly find his crime unforgivable, and will treat him accordingly, which is arguably a fate worse than death.

Rapture Anxiety 

Rapture anxiety, as it is often called, is recognized by some faith experts and mental health professionals as a type of religious trauma. Darren Slade, the president and CEO of the Global Center for Religious Research, has been studying religious trauma across several faiths and denominations for years.

“This is a real thing. It’s a chronic problem,” he says of rapture anxiety. “This is a new area of study, but in general, our research has revealed that religious trauma leads to an increase of anxiety, depression, paranoia and even some OCD-like behaviors: ‘I need to say this prayer of salvation so many times,’ ‘I need to confess my sins so often.’ 

“Now imagine,” he continues, “You are taught that at any minute, you could be left here on Earth. What does that do to the teenager who just had premarital sex, or even simply took the Lord’s name in vain?” READ MORE...

See a related story HERE


Holiday Season Grief Group (Online)

The winter holidays can be overwhelmingly sad for those who are grieving any type of loss, (death, divorce, job loss, pet loss or any major life transition). Our yearly holiday season support group offers the opportunity to talk about your loss experience and learn from others in a safe, supportive setting facilitated by a professional grief and loss counselor. In these sessions, you will be introduced to specific tools and processes for getting through the holidays by honoring your grief rather than allowing it to devastate you.

Our meetings will be based on the principles taught in Dr. Daniel's popular Grief as a Mystical Journey workshops, which are designed to help participants move toward internal transformation rather than focusing on external events. In addition to open discussion and sharing, each meeting will end with a therapeutic process, such as a guided meditation, mapping exercise or sacred ceremony for moving the “stuck” energy of grief out of our bodies and into a more spacious, more ventilated emotional landscape. CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS.

Cultivating Radical Resilience:

An Online Workshop

Feb. 18. 2023 

The third annual Symposium on Death and Bereavement Studies presents a unique online seminar in which you'll work interactively with some of today's most respected leaders in the field. Six CE credit hours available!

Join us for a day of unique content, experiential processes and interactive group exercises covering critical issues in bereavement not generally addressed in traditional counseling or support group settings.  DETAILS HERE

Symposium Presenters

Terri Daniel, DMin, CT, CCTP

Rituals for Healing

and Restoration

Ken Doka, PhD

Resilience: A Socio-Ecological Framework 

Lucy Hone PhD:

Resilient Grieving:

Findings from Psychology 

Robert Neimeyer, PhD

Loss and the

Quest for Meaning

Rev. Caffie Risher

Resilience in

the BIPOC Community 

Panel Discussion

with Presenters

The Road to Resilience 


Our 2023 Conference will be Virtual Next Year.

Save the Dates!

Plans are in the works for our 2023 conference, and we'll be virtual this year. We've already got some fantastic speakers lined up, and will send you a link to the updated website as soon as more details are confirmred. In the meantime, please mark your calendar for July 8 and 9, 2023. CE credits will be available for live attendance. 

If you'd like to watch the video recordings of this year's conference, you can find them HERE.  

Are you a teacher or qualified expert in any of our topics? If so, feel free to submit a proposal to become a conference presenter via THIS LINK. Be sure to read our guidelines before submitting.

Join the conversation in our
Death, Grief and Belief Facebook Group

Contact us:

 [email protected]