Hundreds Gather in Deering Oaks to Celebrate, Honor Deceased Loved Ones with Luminaria

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September 28, 2015 | Hospice of Southern Maine
by Michael Geneseo

PORTLAND, Maine  – Families and friends of those who died in hospice care this year gathered in Deering Oaks this weekend to honor their loved ones’ memory in a celebration of light and song that illuminated the Portland park. Hospice of Southern Maine hosts Twilight in the Park each year to honor the memory of those who have passed in their care in the past year.

“This event is a transformational experience for those who are grieving and an extraordinarily moving experience for the entire community,” said Daryl Cady, Hospice of Southern Maine’s CEO. “It is a celebration of love and remembrance.”

Included in the collection of memorial luminaria that lined the park’s dry wading pool, were the names of the roughly 1,400 patients who died in the care of Hospice of Southern Maine this year. Hundreds of people lined the slopes around the pool and the bridge, while paper lanterns were lit, songs and prayers offered and a ceremonial Chinese lantern was lit and released over the park.

“Our mission is to provide compassion, care, and comfort through end of life,” commented Cady. “In addition to a focus on improving our patients’ quality of life and managing the symptoms that come with a life-limiting illness, that mission includes providing support for families and loved ones. Twilight in the Park is for our community to come together in communal support and remembrance.”

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About Hospice of Southern Maine

Hospice of Southern Maine’s mission is to provide compassion, care, and comfort through end of life, and it is the only non-profit hospice organization in southern Maine whose sole focus is end-of-life care. They seek neither to prolong life nor to hasten death, but to provide excellent care for patients with a life-limiting illness and support for their families, through their home care program or at Gosnell Memorial Hospice House, Maine’s first freestanding inpatient hospice facility.

Hospice of Southern Maine is a non-profit 501(c)3, Medicare certified, state licensed agency. To learn more, visit www.hospiceofsouthernmaine.org

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