Let memories of your loved ones shine brightly at Light up a Life

Staff and volunteers at John Taylor Hospice in Birmingham are inviting families and friends to join them at Light up a Life.

The annual remembrance event is a special time to remember loved ones who have died and to make a dedication in their memory.

Light up a Life will be held on Sunday 10 December at 6pm at Hollyfields Centre in Erdington. The short service will feature music, readings and a quiet moment for reflection – all dedicated to people who are very special to us.

A tree full of lights is illuminated during the service and there is the opportunity to make a dedication in the hospice’s Book of Remembrance.

This year, the hospice has introduced dedication stars as a new way to write a personal message to someone special. Each dedication pack contains two stars with space to write a message – one star is to keep and one can be returned to John Taylor to decorate Christmas trees inside the hospice during December.

Joining this year’s Light up a Life in memory of their mother Betty Morris are sisters Joanne and Helen Morris. When Betty was diagnosed with womb and lung cancer in May 2016, her wish was to be cared for at John Taylor Hospice. Joanne and Helen say they will be ‘forever grateful’ for the care and support their mother received from the hospice – both in her own home and at the hospice in Erdington, Birmingham.

“Mommy was very caring and was always thinking of others,” said Helen, 54. “The three of us lived very happily together in our home in Great Barr. When the ambulance arrived to take Mommy to the hospice she waved goodbye to her home of 58 years.

“This was our first experience of a hospice and from the moment she arrived she was welcomed by all staff. All of the care Mommy received at John Taylor was exceptional and this made such a terrible situation quite bearable. We know she was looked after so well and there was never any doubt in our minds which was very reassuring for us all.”

Joanne, 58, added: “We found all the staff to be quite remarkable and it is because of these wonderful people we have lots of happy memories. We always speak so highly of John Taylor and mention hospices to people to make them aware of what fantastic places they are. We will never forget all that was done for Mommy and feel we will be forever grateful.”

Helen, Betty and Joanne Morris from Great Barr

Helen, Betty and Joanne Morris visiting the Tower of London poppy installation in 2014.

Hospices around the UK host Light up a Life events during the festive period and they are open to anyone – not just people whose loved ones were cared for by a hospice. As well as being a special time to remember loved ones, Light up a Life donations help to support the work of hospices by raising vital funds.

“Hundreds of families joined us for last year’s Light up a Life and it is always a very special and moving service,” said John Taylor’s Community Fundraising Manager Darren Dudley. “We feel privileged to stand side-by-side with families, friends, hospice staff and volunteers to honour the lives of people we love and miss and will always hold dear.”

There is no need to register for the event but dedications for the Book of Remembrance will need to be with the hospice by 1 December. For more information please email fundraising@johntaylorhospice.org.uk or visit www.johntaylorhospice.org.uk

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