WCL Press Release 10-17-2012 National Media Stories and Videos from before and after the 2012 Worldwide Candle Lighting
National Media Stories and Videos from before and after the 2011 Worldwide Candle Lighting
Listen to the beautiful song, Long Before Your Time, created by our sister organization, Bunderverband Verwaiste Eltern from Germany especially for the Worldwide Candle Lighting (Translation)
A Roundup of the 2012 Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting
The 16th TCF Worldwide Candle Lighting continues to grow and spread love and unity as more and more bereaved families learn of it and its significance in honoring the memories of the sons, daughters, brothers and sisters, and grandchildren who left too soon. We always ask everyone holding a Worldwide Candle Lighting service open to the public, here or abroad, to submit information on their service to us so we can provide that information to anyone stopping by our website and looking for a service in their area, and also so we can have some idea of participation around the world. Since we're often asked for details, here are some of the statistics for this year. We received information on 629 services in the U.S. and abroad compared to 551 services in 2011. We received information from 17 countries outside the United States, versus 19 last year, although we believe there are many holding services that we did not hear from this year. On the day of the Worldwide Candle Lighting, according to analytic reports, we had people from 85 countries outside the United States who visited our national website compared to 61 last year. There were over 18,000 visits to our website, approximately the same as last year. The countries providing information on services to us outside the United States this year included: Australia, Bermuda, Canada, Czechoslavokia, England, France, Germany, Guam, Netherlands, New Zealand, North Mariana Islands, Poland, Puerto Rico, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, and Switzerland. Our Remembrance Book continues to grow with well over 5300 tribute posts this year compared to approximately 5,000 last year. This year's posts came from 35 countries, based on information from the poster, which was not required. Of course, we have no way of even venturing a guess how many did not attend services, but lit candles in remembrance with friends and family, but it had to be easily in the tens of thousands or more. We even received a picture showing one couple with two lit candles in the commercial airplane they were flying (don't worry, they were electric LCD).
We will be working hard over the next year to help make more bereaved families aware of the Worldwide Candle Lighting and we hope you'll join in by helping plan a service for next year if your area does not have one. It doesn't have to be a TCF chapter. It can be an allied organization, a funeral home, a hospital, church, a memorial garden, or just a group of people. If you have ideas or ways the Worldwide Candle Lighting can be improved or questions about how you can help, don't hesitate to contact the National Office at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for joining in this event . . . that their light may always shine!
Letter from TCF Executive Director on Worldwide Candle Lighting in Annie's Mailbox December 2, 2012
The Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting unites family and
friends around the globe in lighting candles for one hour to honor and
remember children who have died at any age from any cause. As candles
are lit at 7 p.m. local time, hundreds
of thousands of persons commemorate and honor the memory of all children gone too soon.
This year's event was the 16th Worldwide Candle Lighting. The event grows larger every year thanks to the many people who see the need for services where none have existed. And as the word continues to spread to more of the bereaved who wish to celebrate lives gone too soon by lighting candles in their home, quietly, perhaps just with friends and family.
Now believed to be the largest mass candle lighting
on the globe, the Worldwide Candle Lighting, a gift to the bereavement
community from The Compassionate Friends, creates a virtual 24-hour wave
of light as it moves from time zone to time zone. Hundreds of formal
candle lighting events are held and thousands of informal candle
lightings are conducted in homes as families gather in quiet remembrance
of children who have died, but will never be forgotten.
Worldwide Candle Lighting started in the United States in 1997 as a
small Internet observance but has since swelled in numbers as word has
spread throughout the world of the remembrance.
information was submitted to TCF's national website on services in 18
countries outside the United States including 550 services, as
this special day continues to grow. TCF has been joined in recent years
by chapters of several organizations including MISS, MADD, Parents of
Murdered Children, SIDS Network, Gilda's Club, Boys and Girls Clubs, and BPUSA and for several
years services have been held in all 50 states plus Washington D.C. and
Puerto Rico. There is no way to know how many hundreds of additional
services open to the public are held in the U.S. and around the world
each year without the information being sent to us.
Compassionate Friends and allied organizations were joined in 2011 by
local bereavement groups, churches, funeral homes, hospitals, hospices,
children's gardens, schools, cemeteries, and community centers. Services
have ranged in size from just a few people to nearly a thousand.
year you are invited to post a message in the Remembrance Book which
will be available, during the event, at TCF's national website. In 2011
in that short one day span, more than five thousand messages of love were
received and posted from every U.S. state and Washington D.C., every
territory, as well as dozens of other countries, with some posts in foreign
Here in the United States, publicity about the event is widespread, being featured over the years in Dear Abby, Annie's Mailbox, Ann Landers column, Parade Magazine, Guideposts
magazine, and literally hundreds of U.S. newspapers, dozens of
television stations, and numerous websites and hundreds of personal
blogs. Information on the Worldwide Candle Lighting and planned memorial
candle lighting services (of which we are advised) is posted on TCF's
national website every year as the event nears.
View Dear Abby's column from December 4, 2011 and read a letter from TCF's Executive Director Pat Loder about what this event means to those who have suffered the tragic loss of a child.
If no Worldwide Candle Lighting service was held near you this year,
please feel free to plan one open to the public this year or next year. You are
welcome to use TCF's "Suggestions to Help Plan a Memorial Service in Conjunction with The Compassionate Friends Worldwide Candle Lighting
to help in planning the service. All allied bereavement organizations,
churches, funeral homes, hospices, and formal and informal bereavement
groups are invited to join in the remembrance. When you firm up plans
for your candle lighting, open to the public, please return to this site
and submit the event information form so TCF can list your service with
the many hundreds held in the United States and around the world. The
Worldwide Candle Lighting gives bereaved families everywhere the
opportunity to remember their child(ren) . . . that their light may always shine!
Here are generic WCL posters that you may use in your publicity. We'll have next year's posters available soon!
Worldwide Candle Lighting Posters