Sometimes it seems that the world doesn't want to acknowledge that miscarriages happen, how frequently they happen and how truly devastating they can be. Recently, however, I stumbled upon a really nice memorial project.
Dr. Miriam Rosenthal-English and her husband Myke founded the Miscarriage and Infant Loss Memorial Book in 1995 after suffering a miscarriage at 14 weeks. The couple said “they were let down by medical professionals and those around failed to understand their loss.” Their biographical information states that the couple also had another miscarriage in 2003.
The book lists prayer requests for parents and family members grieving after miscarriage or other death of a child up to three years old. The book was originally a ministry project for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Plymouth England. However, according to Wikipedia, it has grown “to serving people of all beliefs, worldwide.”
The book physically resides at the church of Saint Paul the Apostle in Tintagel, Cornwall, United Kingdom. It is placed on the altar during masses held there. The book also has an online presence. Through the book's website, you can initiate a submission or read others' submissions. Some submissions are filled with information such as names, places, dates and reasons for the loss. Other submissions just say things like “Unnamed baby, greatly missed.” Simple or detailed, all the entries are all moving.
In addition to being able to send a submission or read submissions the website includes articles of interest, loss stories, loss stories about children older than three and links to other ministries and support groups around the world doing similar work. Visitors to the site can read poetry about the loss of a baby and sign the guest book. There are links to other memorial sites and a contact form where parents can contact a medical or loss team for further information. The website has also been translated into several languages other than English.
Over the years, the book appears to have grown to several books, each with several volumes. Although I likely won't make it to the United Kingdom anytime soon to see the actual book, I was touched by the website. I think this is a wonderful idea to bring some comfort to grieving parents and others affected by miscarriage.