Grief Support

Pathways Center for Grief & Loss

We wanted to pass this great community resource onto you, provided by Hospice & Community Care. Many grieving people find evenings and weekends difficult times to cope after a loss. Don't suffer alone! Check out our 24/7 online grief education and support. With just a few clicks of the mouse, get access to videos, in-depth learning and connect with others who are grieving. Click Here.

Journeying Through Grief  Booklet Series

It’s common to receive care and support immediately after a loved one passes away. Within a few weeks, however, the cards, letters, visits, and phone calls tend to taper off. When this occurs, its common to begin feeling alone and forgotten.

The Journeying through Grief  booklet series provides guidance throughout the first year following a loss in a series of four booklets; A Time to Grieve, Experiencing Grief, Finding Hope and Healing, and Rebuilding and Remembering.

Journeying through grief is never easy & we at William P. Spence Funeral & Cremation Services, Inc. understand and that’s why we would like to make this series available to those of you in our local community at NO charge.

To begin receiving the series, contact us or stop by the office.

Grief and the Holidays

The holidays can be especially difficult following the death of a loved one. Here are two resources from Hospice & Community Care that give you ideas on Ways to Cope and Ways to Remember.

Support Resources

Camp Chimaqua  

Hospice and Community Care

Mount Joy PA 17552

Camp Chimaqua, a 3-day overnight weekend camp for grieving children (ages 6-12), provides a safe, accepting and healing environment to better understand and express feelings of grief and loss.

Click here for more information about Camp Chimaqua.

Apart from a small registration fee for retreats and camps, there are no fees for any Pathways programs due to the generous support from the community.

Coping Kids  

PATHWays Center for Grief and Loss

Mount Joy PA 17552

Children ages 4–7 years, 8–12 years, teens 13–18 years, and adults grieving a significant loss meet separately on Coping Kids support group evenings. While the children and teens participate in an activity, adults are encouraged to stay and talk with other adults and counselors about the challenges of parenting grieving teens and children. The PATHways Center offers this program throughout the school year.

Pathways for Grief and Loss - Adult Services  

4075 Old Harrisburg Pike Mount Joy PA 17552

Since each journey through grief is unique, PATHways offers a broad spectrum of options for adults who are coping with the serious illness or death of a loved one. Many are available both in the daytime and evening.

Camp Dragonfly  

2905 Camp Swatara Road, Bethel PA 19507

For dates and locations, go to

Grieving children and teens often feel alone in their grief. Most of their friends don’t understand how it feels when someone special dies. Camp Dragonfly is a great place where children and teens from throughout the area can gather with their peers to share the experience of grieving the death of someone they love. Through playing and sharing, campers realize that their emotions are normal and that what is happening to them is happening to others. Fun is the top priority at Camp Dragonfly. Campers will learn that it is okay to laugh and play—and that it is not disrespectful to the memory of the person who died. At Camp Dragonfly, many activities are designed to gently and slowly guide each camper through some of the pain of grief. Activities include: making a memory collage, a question/answer period with a physician, workbook sessions, arts and crafts, recreation time with paddle boats, a candlelight ceremony, and a special camp closing ceremony which the parents/guardians are asked to attend. The closing ceremony is designed to include the entire family. It symbolically allows the campers and participants to release some of the pain associated with losing a loved one while holding onto the special memories. Camp Dragonfly will provide a supportive, healing environment where campers can openly express their feelings without fear of being criticized. The camp is free for chil­dren who have experienced the death of a family member. It is a service of PinnacleHealth Hospice.

Highmark Caring Place  

3 Walnut Street, Suite 200 Lemoyne PA 17043

The Highmark Caring Place is dedicated to children, adolescents and their families who have lost a loved one. It is a safe place with safe people where children and their families can share their feelings, memories, and experiences in an atmosphere of non-judgmental acceptance. The children and their parents who attend Caring Place receive support and encouragement from other members of their group - other children and adults who have experienced the same types of losses. Groups meet weekly or bi-weekly and begin with a meal together. Children then break into age-specific groups where they engage in creative activities and group discussions. Likewise, parents meet together in separate groups to discuss how the loss has impacted their family and how they can help their children cope with their grief.

An Understanding Heart, Journeying Through Widowhood  

451 West Newport Road, Lititz PA 17543
Contact: Belinda Hess

This support group is exclusively for widows. Belinda Graybill Hess is a Christian woman that has experienced the death of a husband. Through her own grief recovery, she helps other widows to experience joy once again through biblical teachings and sharing in a caring environment.

Friends of Angels

PO Box 152, Willow Street, PA 17584

A nonprofit that supports the work of organizations helping families that have lost children; whether through miscarriage, still birth or infant loss.

Garden of Hope

30 Springhouse Lane, Intercourse, PA 17534
Contact: 717-615-7473    Visit:

A Gordonville-area garden that memorializes babies lost to miscarriage, stillbirth or early infant death. A place to remember precious lives lost.

Walking Forward Together

342 North Queen Street, Lancaster, PA 17603
Contact: 717-455-0358;    Visit:

A Lancaster-based nonprofit supporting women and families who have suffered a fetal or neonatal loss.

Healing Embrace

10845 Harney Street, Omaha, NE 68154
Contact: 402.819.4002;    Visit:

A nonprofit that provides support to grieving parents and honors their babies.

Grief Library

The following is a list of books available at the Manheim Community Library that address various aspects of grief.

Aunt Mary's Rose, by Douglas Wood. Find it in the "W" bin. Family traditions and photos help us recall happy memories about those we love.

The Berenstain Bears Lose a Friend, by Stan Berenstain. Find it in the "B" bin.

The Dragonfly Door, by John Adams. Find it in the "A" bin.

Grandma's Gloves, by Cecil Castelluci. Find it on the Parenting shelf. A grandchild faces the death of a beloved grandmother by remembering all she has been taught about tending the beautiful flowers in the garden.

The Heart and the Bottle, by Oliver Jeffers. Find it on the Parenting shelf. A small child experiences a death in the family and hides her heart so it cannot be hurt again. She eventually learns that life does go on and it becomes full and colorful again.

Remembering Crystal, by Sebastian Loth. Find it on the Parenting shelf. Crystal and Zelda are friends. One day Crystal is gone, and though other friends try to convince Zelda it is okay, she has a hard time understanding. This story shares her journey of understanding and learning to remember.

Remembering Mrs. Rossi, by Amy Hest. Find it in the "H" bin.

The Saddest Time, by Norma Simon. Find it on the Parenting shelf. Three short stories reflect the time surrounding the death of someone cared about by others in the story. It attempts to explain that death is a natural, if sad, part of life. A beloved Uncles gets sick and cannot be cured. A child dies in a biking accident and a grandmother comes quietly to the end of her days with family nearby.