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The H.O.P.E. Support Group was begun as a direct result of God’s loving kindness to me after the death of my precious son, Kris. God did some pretty amazing things to show me that Kris was safe with Him in Heaven and that I had nothing to fear. He has proven Himself to me to be the ‘God of all comfort.’

Three months after losing Kris I was reading a book entitled “The Journey” by Cathy Gwynn. At the beginning of one of the chapters was this scripture: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” II Corinthians 1:3-4. The trump was sounded. I knew that God was calling me to reach out and comfort other bereaved parents with the same love and compassion that He so generously shared with me.

The next day I e-mailed my Pastor, the Rev. Frank Sossamon of South Henderson Pentecostal Holiness Church, and told him what the Lord had laid upon my heart. He was very supportive and offered a classroom in the church to be used as a support group meeting place. Within a few days we held an organizational meeting and set a first meeting date of March 20, 2003.

As of this writing, seven months later, we have 16 members who have actually attended a meeting or meetings and a mailing list of 40 area bereaved parents. Our group members are like family. We love being together and genuinely care for one another. We now meet the first Thursday night of each month at the church and have recently started getting together more often to work on memorial scrapbooks of our children.

H.O.P.E., which stands for Helping Other Parents Endure, has lived up to its’ calling. We do comfort one another. During meetings we cry together, share together, encourage one another, and yes, even laugh together. We remember one another in prayer and cards on “hard” days such as our children’s birthdays and Heavendays. I thank the God of all comfort first and foremost for the comfort that only He can give, and for the love and fellowship of H.O.P.E.

Any bereaved parent who lives in or near Henderson, North Carolina is encouraged to attend. We meet at 7:00 p.m. on the first Thursday night of the month at South Henderson Pentecostal Holiness Church in classroom #7. The church address is 905 Americal Road, Henderson, NC 27536. (web address: http://www.shphc.org )

Pictured below are some of the precious angels that are represented by our group.

In Loving Memory of
Kris Jernigan

Beloved son of Cathy and Raymond Espino and James Jernigan
and brother of Philip, Ana and Zachariah
May 20, 1986 - November 17, 2002


In Loving Memory of
Chad Phillip Pendergrass

Beloved Son of Phil and Carole Pendergrass
and Brother of Audrey
September 21, 1972 - June 10, 1986

In Loving Memory of
Cynthia "Cindy" Renee Hoyle

Beloved Daughter of Nancy W. Hoyle
Sister of Tim Hoyle, Jr.
April 1, 1979 - October 14, 2002

In Loving Memory of
Kristy Leigh West

Beloved Daughter of W.A. and Kathy West
Sister of Kimberly and Allen
June 18, 1976 - July 1, 1991

In Loving Memory of
Kyle Michael Tingen

Beloved Son of D.C. and Angela Tingen
Brother of Kendall and Cam
August 30, 1986 - October 12, 2002

In Loving Memory of
Jason Aaron Allanson

Beloved Twin Sons of Linda Gale Davis Morton and William Anthony Allanson II
Brothers of Joshua and twin sisters - Adrienne and Andrea
February 11, 1978 - July 20, 1980

In Loving Memory of
Joseph "Joey" Anthony Allanson

Beloved Twin Sons of Linda Gale Davis Morton and William Anthony Allanson II
Brothers of Joshua and twin sisters - Adrienne and Andrea
February 11, 1978 - March 11, 2001

In Loving Memory of
Kaitlyn Danielle Railey

Beloved Daughter of Daniel and Margaret Railey
Sister of J.R.
March 29, 2002 - March 29, 2002

In Loving Memory of
Tyler Ramsay "T-Bird" Moss

Beloved son of Rod and Angie Moss
January 10, 1992 - February 13, 2003

In Loving Memory of
Jeremy "Shane" Torrence

Beloved Son of Dawn Torrence
January 28, 1993 - September 11, 1999

Twenty-six family members, friends and loved ones gathered on December 14, National Children's Memorial Day, for H.O.P.E.'s first annual candlelight vigil and remembrance service. A name reading paid tribute to each of the forty-four children whose parents attend the H.O.P.E. support group meetings or receive the monthly newsletter. A beautiful remembrance table was set up to hold the photos and items of significance. Cathy Espino, Kris' mom, gave the welcome and introduction of the support group, and read the names. Kathy West, Kristy's mom, gave remarks and led the prayer. Nancy Hoyle, Cindy's mom, decorated the remembrance table, Margaret Railey, Kaitlyn's mom printed the names in the program, and the support group members provided the refreshments.













 

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