A special service for anyone affected by the loss of a baby at any stage, during pregnancy, at birth or in infancy, will be held in St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast, on Sunday May 28.
It is organised by The Mariposa Trust, a UK charity founded in 2012 by Zoe and Andy Clark-Coates, who saw a critical lack of support for people who, like them, had gone through baby loss.
With more than 258,000 babies being lost yearly in the UK alone, the charity needed to be able to offer not only a comprehensive package of befriending and support, but also national baby loss remembrance services for people to join together and remember the children they had lost.
They called these Saying Goodbye services, and four years on over 80 services have taken place across the UK, USA and France, and 2017 will see a further 20 take place.
St Anne’s is one of the cathedrals to host an annual service and this year’s begins at 3.30pm on May 28.
A spokesperson for The Mariposa Trust said that one in four women suffer miscarriage and baby loss and the service is aimed at anyone who has either personally lost a baby at any stage of pregnancy, at birth or in early years, or who has been affected by a family member’s or friend’s loss.
“Whether the loss was recent or 80 years ago, everyone is welcome to attend,” the spokesperson said. “We have also extended the services, and gladly welcome anyone who is grieving the fact that they haven’t had children. This may be due to circumstance, infertility or for other reasons – but all are welcome.
“Babies and children are also invited to come with their family, as the Saying Goodbye service is truly a family event for all.”
More information is available at: www.sayinggoodbye.org.