HOPE Ministries is a support group for those who have lost babies through miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss. We meet once a month at Antioch Bible Baptist Church in suburban Kansas City, Missouri. Our format is small and informal. We spend a few minutes in the beginning on a topic of interest and then spend the rest of the time discussing where we are in our grief and what has happened in the last month. Topics of discussion include: the grief pattern, fear, anger, emptiness, guilt, sadness, depression, difference between men & women’s grief, marital stress, and healing & acceptance.
How We Began
HOPE Ministries got its humble beginning as a group of three women sought each other’s comfort after the loss of a child. At the time, the group was called “The Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Group.” A spokesperson of the group said, “We are a group of women who have experienced pregnancy and infant loss and found no one who understands or can assist us through the grief and trauma. We have joined together to support each other.” That was 1988. At the first meeting in January, no one showed up. After advertising in four local papers, there was one person who came to the second meeting. Between the second and third meetings, phone calls started coming in, and the third meeting had four people in attendance.
I attended the group after my son died in 1993. In 1997, I was asked to take over the publication of the monthly newsletter. Shortly thereafter, I took over the leadership of the group, and in 1998, HOPE Ministries was born. HOPE stands for Healing Our Pain & Emptiness. We changed names and locations, but the essence of the group stayed the same. HOPE has been reaching out to hurting families in the Kansas City area for the last 16 years. The number of families touched by this group tops 130.
By God’s grace, we are now hoping to expand our reach through this website. There are so many hurting families out there that do not have the proximity to a support group, so my hope is that through this site we can reach those families and offer them the same support we get when we meet each month here in Kansas City.