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The Art of Comforting by Val Walker Summary
We live in an increasingly "virtual" world in which it can be tempting to skip making that true, human connection with someone in pain. Even though our thoughts might be with them, we lack the confidence to reach out, worrying that we will say or do the "wrong" thing. In this practical, step-by-step guide to what she calls "the art of comforting," Val Walker draws on numerous interviews with "Master Comforters" to guide readers in gently and gracefully breaking through the walls that those who are suffering often erect around themselves. Interviewees include inspiring individuals such as Alicia Rasin, who, as a victim's advocate for the city of Richmond, Virginia, has devoted her life to comforting grieving families devastated by homicide, gang violence, and other traumatic experiences; or Patricia Ellen, who, as a grief counselor and outreach director at the Center for Grieving Children in Portland, Maine, appears on site to support and comfort children, staff, and parents when a school is facing a death, violence, or other crises. All of us will, at one time or the other, be called upon to offer warmth and support to another human being who is suffering-this book will show you how to answer the call with an open heart.