Trauma, Grief and Recovery

Report on Trauma Workshop
October 13, 2022
UCRMN offered a fall workshop on Trauma, Grief and Recovery, called Ministry in the Midst, and offered by Rev. Michele Rowe of Maple Creek, Sask. Michele is Certified as a Community and Workplace Traumatologist and happens to hold a Social Work degree as well as being a minister to a community of faith. As all of our church communities have suffered trauma from the COVID Pandemic and all it brought to us, it was a great relief for the 14 participants to talk together in this time, shaped by helpful information on trauma. We have experienced grief and loss and anger, dislocation, confusion and fear.
COVID broke apart our community as we knew it, and accelerated many losses the church is already experiencing. We named collective traumas our communities have or are presently experiencing, like, the cost of living, grief from deaths, especially loved family members or friends dying alone, the overwhelming of the medical system, and the backup of elective and emergency surgeries, children who spent a year or more on online schooling, the angers of community around masks and shots.
Michele invited us to consider developing rituals in our communities of faith which will lift up what we must let go, and what can be welcomed back. She reminded us that trauma continues to strike us, like Hurricane Fiona in Eastern Canada, or the deaths in James Smith Cree Nation of Saskatchewan.
(One of the really important bits of information Michele gave us is that Trauma is passed down through generations, which we know, but that people actually experience genetic change by trauma)
Michele expressed her appreciation that we organized a 2-hour time period for this workshop, which gave us time to lean into the heart issues of our times. 75% of the participants of the workshop came from Michele’s Regional Council of Living Skies, most who had previous discussion on COVID trauma.

Submitted by Catherine Christie and Michele Rowe.

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