Around the world, people pause to remember the survivors of suicide loss at the end of November each year. It’s a day set aside for survivors to come together to find connection, understanding and hope through their shared experiences.
Cross Over Ministries in Montgomery County hosted a special ceremony on Saturday, Nov. 21, at Shane Cole Park in Nokomis.
Prior to the ceremony, participants were asked to select a bead necklace in a variety of colors. The colors signified their relationship to someone who has been a victim of suicide. Orange signifies the loss of a sibling, purple is the loss of a relative or friend, white is the loss of a child, gold is the loss of a parent, red is the loss of a partner or spouse, silver is the loss of a first responder or military member. Teal beads signify that someone’s loved one struggles, blue beads support the cause and green beads support a personal struggle.
The group created luminaries in memory of those who have been lost to suicide and read their names in a special ceremony.
Following the reading of names, the ceremony included a Native American rock and feather ceremony, which is an ancient ritual of healing and hope. The rock and feather are used to represent both the pains of the past and the hope of the future.
Before concluding the ceremony, Cross Over Ministries announced two new board members, including Andrea Ruppert of Witt and Jodi Reynolds of Nokomis.
They also announced they will soon open The Living Room, which provides a mental health crisis alternative for adults, on the second level of the Montgomery County Farm Bureau building in downtown Hillsboro.
It will offer free crisis intervention, an alternative to hospital emergency rooms and a safe, comfortable and confidential place for those who need it.
For more information about Cross Over Ministries, visit www.crossovernfp.com.