Co-Presidents’ Message – May 2023

April 29, 2023

Greetings COPE Community –

I want to tell you a short story. Of spirit and inner peace. Once upon a time, there was an expansive and majestic park. And nestled inside the wooded park, lay lush gardens and fields. Beyond the mesmerizing rose gardens, one can see a reflecting pond in the distance, as long as the eye can see. But you’ve stopped at a brick pathway that leads to a labyrinth made of stones.

Surrounded by a rainbow of flowers and benches. It feels like sacred ground. And the tranquil power of the labyrinth starts to slow down your racing head. Before you rest and sit down on the bench and enjoy your journey, you start down the path of the labyrinth slowly. Adjusting to the curves and bends, gaining your balance as you navigate your way and move your way farther along. Slowly, your body, mind and spirit start to feel calmer and centered. By the time you’ve reached the center, things have quieted down in your head and there’s actually opportunity to meditate and contemplate. And you forget for a moment why you were there.

This isn’t just a parable. But the way I would describe a visit to COPE’s memorial labyrinth in Eisenhower Park’s memorial plaza. Something I choose to do when I have a moment to myself and the sun is shining. The COPE labyrinth is the actual physical embodiment of the virtual safe spaces and support/meeting groups that COPE provides to grieving families. And it’s a symbol of our spiritual journey as we deal with our grief and loss and navigate towards spiritual healing and renewal. To me, the fact that the COPE labyrinth exists- with memorial bricks and benches dedicated to loved ones- is a gift/treasure. Another opportunity to connect with our loved ones who have passed. My hope for everyone dealing with loss and in need of support is that they seek out and find those spaces that provide them with some calm and enable them to ease their mind.

– Larry


Learn more about the COPE Labyrinth and opportunities to honor your loved one with an engraved brick or bench in this special location.  Click here: copefoundation.org/cope-labyrinth

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