1. High/Low check-in
    a. Ask for highs, lows
    b. Then add a simple question
    i. What is one thing you’re missing?
    ii. What is one thing you’re grieving?
  2. Make a mini Wailing Wall
    a. Make a wooden frame, cover it with chicken wire
    b. Provide slips of paper on which individuals can write the things they grieve, have lost, or prayers
    c. Made one for a family whose father was facing major surgery
  3. Activity for the end of the youth group year
    a. Write down regrets on slips of paper
    b. Then burn them
  4. Helping Youth Grieve, by Bob Yoder
    a. Three step/two minute prayers writing exercise (p. 50 in the chapter “Writing your own prayer of lament”)
    i. Follows the formula of psalms of lament
    ii. Two minutes: address anger and pain toward God
    iii. Two minutes: remember a time of God’s goodness and faithfulness in your life
    iv. Two minutes: offering praise and thanksgiving to God
  5. Change diagram
    a. https://frontlinemanagementexperts.wordpress.com/2015/07/03/bridges-transition-model/
    b. Diagram offers words to help identify emotions in the process of change, but can also help identify emotions in situations of loss/lament
    c. Give youth a blank “curve”, invite them to identify where they are on the curve and what they are experiencing
  6. Pause: Play, Breathe, Pray card deck (https://www.mennoniteusa.org/resource-portal/resource/pause-play-breathe-pray-new-card-deck-game/)
    a. There are cards in the deck that would be useful in introducing and leading youth in lament
    b. On one side the cards have a wide variety of artwork. These may be useful in asking, “How are you feeling today?”
  7. Feelings wheel as a resource for finding the words to express feelings
    a. https://feelingswheel.com/
  8. Some observations:
    a. We need to get in touch with our emotions before we can lament. Jesus didn’t say, “Blessed are those who experience bad things” but “Blessed are those who mourn.”
    b. Recognize the stages of grief: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance
    c. Our bodies can hold our trauma. When you get bad news, where do you feel the ache—your heart, your gut, your neck? Recognize that we store our emotions in our bodies.

-WDC Youth Worker Group, Contact Dwight Regier with any follow-up questions at dwightr@mennowdc.org