Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Angels too religious

In England, a support group for parents of stillborn babies has been told to drop the word angel from a special pack as it may offend grieving parents who are not religious.

The Whisperer Group donated the New Angel Mum bags for families at Colchester General Hospital.

They had decided that angels was the perfect way to describe stillborn and miscarried babies.

The packs contain announcement cards for the arrival of an angel baby and a handwritten letter from the group addressed to new angel parents.

However the health authorities told the group to drop the word angel as it may offend grieving parents who are not religious.

Bereaved father Ted Townsend wrote to the group, “There is no other word to describe them. Whether religious or not, the term angels sums up what these babies are. What a stupid world we live in. The NHS should be grateful to people like yourselves, not make things awkward.”

One of the organisers, Michelle Taylor, said that the bag would make a huge difference and show the parents that people are thinking about them.

The importance of acknowledging and remembering a miscarried baby is emphasised by the Miscarriage Association of Ireland.

It offers bereaved parents the opportunity to enter details of their baby on a Book of Remembrance or a Memorial Stone in one of three graveyards in Dublin.

It also offers cards and mementoes for parents to fill in with the baby’s details.

There is a section on the association’s website that offers parents the opportunity to remember their babies on special days.

Several of the poems there refer to babies as angels for example lines such as, “An angel never dies” or, “Born an angel.”

Many of the poems and memorials are secular and others are very religious.

For such babies there is a special burial and memorial area in Glasnevin Cemetery and it is called the Holy Angels' Plot.

SIC: CIN

1 comment:

cerianporterjones said...

As the piece says, "They had decided that angels was the perfect way to describe stillborn and miscarried babies." What they don't seem to understand is that it's not for them to decide - it's up to the parents themselves.