HANAPEPE — Former President George H.W. Bush and the victims of the recent California fires were among the list of names recited Thursday evening during an interfaith gathering at the Hanapepe Hawaiian Congregational Church.
Kauai Hospice hosted the second of three candle-lighting ceremonies to more than a hundred people who collected to remember their loved ones who have died, but whose memories continue to live in the hearts and minds of the audience. Quiet music was provided by Cindy Combs.
“We remember those who died — who we can no longer physically see or hold,” said Lori Miller, executive director of Kauai Hospice. “But we will always hold them in our hearts. We grieve for their absence, but rejoice for the time we had with them.”
Eve Domingcil was surrounded by her ohana as she took time to remember, honor and acknowledge her husband, brother-in-law and father.
“The names are different, but the loss is hard — especially during the holidays,” Domingcil said. “There are two types of death — the first is when the physical body leaves, and the second is when no one remembers you. My father was afraid of the second death, more so than the first.”
Miller said we are at an “intersection of life,” and not alone in grief.
Grief is a journey navigated by our own experiences, culture and faith, she said. Kauai Hospice wants everyone to know that they are not alone.
“The candles acknowledge our grief, courage, love and hope,” Miller said. “We are here now to create a space and invite love to join.”
Sandi Sterker, host from the Hanapepe Hawaiian Congregational Church, joined the crowd in lighting a candle of remembrance.
“Breathe the flowers,” she said. “And blow out the candle.”
Kauai Hospice will host its final candle-lighting memorial Monday at the Church of the Pacific in Princeville starting at 6 p.m.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or firstname.lastname@example.org.