LEETONIA - Oakdale Cemetery hosted its fifth annual Christmas Remembrance of Loved Ones Sunday afternoon in the Chapel for area residents wishing to honor those who have passed.
The Rev. Kari Lankford of St. Paul's Lutheran Church reminded those in attendance of God's message of promise and hope during a time of remembrance of lost loved ones - the promise of comfort through the belief in Him and the hope offered through His control.
"We have to learn to trust God with our lives, not only with our own well being but with that of those we love," she said. "No matter the circumstances, the final destination is in the presence of God. Those represented on the [Remembrance] tree are the ones who have gone before us...to prepare our place in Heaven."
According to Cemetery Clerk Sue Simpson, area residents provide ornaments to place on the tree in memory of a loved one. Each person may write the name of a loved one on a slip of paper, sign their name and attach it to the ornament. The ornaments remain on the tree through Jan. 1 and then are stored at the cemetery for use on the next year's tree.
"It's an honor to be able to do something meaningful like this for people," Simpson said, noting that the ceremony is not restricted to people with loved ones interred at Oakdale.
Kevin Howell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org