Attending a ‘Living with Loss’ retreat or workshop


Grief following bereavement can feel overwhelming, particularly if you have lost a partner or child, or if your loved one’s passing was sudden or traumatic, or if you have suffered multiple losses. The aim of the Living with Loss supported retreats is to better equip you to deal with your life-changing loss. We look at to some of the spiritual, emotional and practical challenges of grief, and then explore practical and creative ways to cope with life as it is now.

The focus of the retreats is on making the best of life in the present. We have two to three led sessions every day. These include explanations, reflection prompts, creative activities, discussions, times of reflection and prayer, and listening to music or inspirational readings.

Besides the led sessions, there is time for personal reflection, handouts to work on individually, as well as the opportunity for participants to have individual prayer with retreat leaders or a pastoral support team if you wish and if time permits (this is not always possible on a weekend retreat). A selection of relevant books are made available to read during the retreat.

The topics we will cover (depending on the duration of the retreat and the needs of the participants) include:

  • Understanding grief, the physical, practical and emotional impact of loss, and a Christian perspective on grief.
  • Living with loss, models of recovery, complicated grief, crises of faith, dealing with our emotions.
  • Honouring the memories of our loved ones, reflective activities, digital legacy.
  • Survival strategies for our life today, being kind to ourselves, getting through difficult times.

These are the different retreats listed on the events page:

(1) Living with Loss Part 1 – this is the first retreat.

(2) Living with Loss Part 2, only open to those who have already attended a Living with Loss retreat.

(3) Living with Loss “Tea Room Gathering” – a more relaxed event for those who have already attending at least one Living with Loss retreat.

If you are unsure whether a retreat like this is for you, then I invite you to contact me and/or keep reading this site, as well as follow the links, to find out more details. If you do get in touch, I’ll be happy to call you back and tell you more about it and answer any specific questions you might have.

The Living with Loss project is founded and run by Abi May and until recently, the main assistance has been from my husband John. Now Esther Birtwistle (formerly of Lee Abbey) is also assisting in the running of retreats, workshops and day events.


Have a look at the slideshow for a few glimpses of our retreats

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