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CHRISTIAN LIFE IN LONDON | SEPTEMBER 2022 EDITION
Dealing Effectively with Grief and Loss
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Published August 2022


By Marilynn Vanderstaay
Photo by Ben White on Unsplash


When Jesus’ good friend Lazarus, brother of friends Mary and Martha died, Jesus wept. John 11:35.

Personally, I don’t think He wept because His friend died, but because of the grief his sisters were experiencing. Jesus already knew what He was going to do to get though the grief by raising Lazarus from the dead. Which He did.

In the same way, while we may not be able to raise loved ones from the dead, although we have seen examples such as Smith Wigglesworth, an early 20th century preacher who literally raised people from the dead including his wife Polly, we can all be prepared to deal with the passing of loved ones.

If there is no pre planning with a funeral home or crematorium, there are full service funeral homes in London that will guide and help through the grieving process immediately from the time the loved one passes to the funeral or cremation and beyond.

Between 70 and 75 decisions are made within the first 24 to 48 hours of death. It is difficult to think rationally while making so many decisions within days of losing someone. So, it is important to find a wise voice to turn to for guidance and consolation.

The John T. Donohue Funeral Home Limited, 362 Waterloo Street, offers a complete range of the kinds of services and practical assistance one needs immediately at the time of death and during the days and even weeks to follow. After the death takes place whether it be a sudden or anticipated passing at a hospital/nursing home/hospice facility, or at home, after dealing with required authorities such as doctors and the police, phone a funeral director to guide you.

If the loved one has not made their wants and desires, including type of burial and funeral rites known in a prearranged plan, an individual or the family can sit down with a funeral director within hours to plan arrangements including burial or cremation a traditional funeral or alternative service, to fulfill the wishes of the family.

Through the 80 years of serving all faiths and cultures in London, Donohue Funeral Home owners have developed adjunct services families may also need including assistance with writing obituaries and eulogies, funeral protocol, applications for government and other benefits, family care and grief counselling, assistance scattering ashes, and more. Go to https://donohuefuneralhome.ca/ for more information.

“Our goal as a family operated business is to provide first class every funeral no matter how large or how small,” says Patrick Donohue, Manager Preneed and Estates.


As part of its Family Care Resources, Donahue offers grief counselling and an onsite grief educator.

Ten Facts about Grief and Grieving
By Dr Bill Webster, Director of Grief Education at Donahue Funeral Home


“One reason that we often find grief such a difficult challenge is that we have never learned what to expect. The following facts will help you understand some crucial truths about grief and grieving and how we can work through the process to find healing.” 1. Grief is normal. When you lose someone special from your life you are going to grieve. Our grief is saying that we miss the person and that we’re struggling to adjust to a life without that special relationship.

2. The worst kind of grief is yours. A loss is a very personal matter. Your loss seems like the worst possible thing that could have happened to you. When you lose a significant person from your life, whatever the relationship, it hurts and nothing takes away from your right to feel the loss and grief the absence of that person from your life.

3. The way out of grief is through it. Grief is painful. Loss is one of the most difficult human experiences. There is no easy way around it.

4. Your grief is intimately connected to the relationship.

5. Grief is hard work. A grief response is often referred to as “Grief-work”. It requires more energy to work through than most people expect.

6. Your grief will take longer than most people think.

7. Grief is unpredictable You may experience a wide variety of feelings and reactions, not just those generally associated with grief.

8. There may be “secondary losses” to deal with including the loss of financial security, a home, or even their independence; the loss of a role in life such as parent or a child; status; or even the loss of hopes and dreams of “living happily ever after.”

9. Grief comes and goes. Even then grief is not unlike a roller coaster. One day we feel pretty good, the next we find ourselves in the depths of despair.

10. Effective grief work is not done alone. Reach out to people who will listen non judgementally to you and what you are going through, not necessarily for solutions but just to listen.

Click HERE or the complete original version of this list.

The history of John T. Donohue Funeral Home

“Donohue Funeral Home is a family business, here to help when your family isn’t sure where to turn. Our complementary Family Care service ensures that you are aware of all the things you didn’t already know about dealing with the passing of a loved one. Our service to you does not end with the completion of the funeral, says family spokesperson Patrick Donohue.

Founded in 1930 by John T. and Helen M. Donohue, Donohue Funeral Home is the oldest family-owned and operated funeral establishment in London, Ontario.

Relocated to its present location on the southeast corner of Waterloo Street and King Street in 1952, the family’s vision was to grow in order to accommodate the community’s families and their individual needs.

John T. and Helen’s son J. Dennis entered into the family business in 1961 and became president upon the death of his father in 1966.


Undergoing extensive renovations in 1970, a large visitation room/chapel as well as a lounge were added to better serve families and to accommodate their growing needs.

Dennis’ eldest son John obtained his funeral directors license in 1992, while younger son Patrick joined the firm in 1996. Adapting to the needs of the area, further expansion of the facility was completed in 1998 and again un May 2012, ensuring a spacious and comfortable environment for visitation and funeral services.

For more information contact John T. Donohue Funeral Home by phone 519-434-2708 or by email donohue@donohuefuneralhome.ca