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Archdeacon urges people to light up a life in Ripon

The acting Archdeacon of Richmond has urged people from across the district to celebrate the lives of loved ones this December by taking part in a special community remembrance event.

Saint Michael’s, the charity providing specialist care and support to local families living with terminal illness and bereavement, will hold the first of its annual Light up a Life services at 3pm in Ripon Cathedral this Sunday.

The event, which is open to all, offers local people the opportunity to dedicate a light on the charity’s Christmas tree in memory of someone special.

The Revd Nicholas Henshall
The Revd Nicholas Henshall

The Revd Nicholas Henshall, who is also the Vicar of Christ Church on the Stray, Harrogate, said:

This community remembrance service is a special invitation to each of us to celebrate the lives of people we have loved.

Light up a Life is an invitation to remember with hope.

The lights tell an extraordinary story – yes, about human grief, but much more about a real human confidence that grief is never the last word.

And this invitation is for everyone, whatever your own faith, and whatever connection you have with Saint Michael’s.

Come and share in a celebration full of promise as we make the darkness of a winter night luminous with a thousand lights.

The event will feature music from Ripon City Band and Rock Up and Sing Choir, alongside readings, prayers and blessing from Revd Henshall, Acting Dean, Keith Pushon, and representatives from Saint Michael’s.

During the service, children will be invited to hang personalised memory stars on the Christmas tree alongside the dedicated lights.

The lights will be illuminated during the special community event and will shine throughout the festive season as a tribute to the lives of those who are being remembered.

Saint Michael’s make no charge for the dedications, although all donations are gratefully received.

Donations from last year’s event totalled £38,000 including Gift Aid.

All Light up a Life donations will help the charity ensure more local people get the care and support they need to live their last years, months and days with choice, respect and dignity.

The second Light up a Life service will take place on Sunday December 15, 4pm, at Saint Michael’s Hospice, Harrogate.

To dedicate a light, call Saint Michael’s on (01423) 879 687 or visit to make a dedication online.

1. Continuing to improve and expand the Inpatient and Outpatient services available from our Hospice, at Hornbeam Park.

2. Working in collaboration with our colleagues in the NHS to assist people who choose to live at home at the end of their life.

3. Setting up and running the area’s first comprehensive bereavement support service.

4. Playing a leading role in the development of a palliative care strategy for the local area.

5. Identifying and sharing excellent clinical palliative care practice through the development of an education programme for health professionals.

6. Acting as a voice for the views and concerns of the people who use these services.




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