Newark Elks Lodge No. 1249 welcomed families and friends of those members who passed away during 2012 at a special memorial service held on Dec. 2.

Newark Elks Lodge No. 1249 welcomed families and friends of those members who passed away during 2012 at a special memorial service held on Dec. 2.
 
There were over 65 people in attendance to remember Peter Lonneville, Norman Fitch, Robert S. Anderson, Deborah A Lyons, Robert Croll, Gerald L. Rohrer, and Joseph Nicosia Sr.
 
Brad Whittaker, Exalted Ruler, opened the ceremony with an invocation by Diana Tormey, Chaplain. The choir from the First United Methodist Church, accompanied by Chrissy Stevens on piano and directed by Barbara Seppeler, sang, 'Lead Me Lord', 'An Advent Credo' and 'Be Still'. One long stemmed red rose for each of the departed was placed on the altar by Richard Bowker and Charles VerStraete while lodge officers added forget-me-nots, amaranth, and clinging ivy which represented justice, immortality and brotherly love.
 
Reverend Timothy Johnson spoke on why this annual memorial service is held on the first Sunday in December. He pointed out that this is when the 2 Seasons come together... the Season of Grief and the Season of the Holidays. He said that this makes the holidays very difficult for families and that they are usually left with two options. They can choose to deal with their grief by going away in an attempt to escape memories or stay and make new traditions. Reverend Johnson's message expressed hope as he stressed that the human spirit is resilient and that those suffering from the loss of a loved one, will smile for a new reason as time goes by since life is always stronger than death.
 
The bell rang eleven times to remind all those present that, "Upon the tablets of love and memory, their names shall endure forever."
 
The FUMC Choir led the assembly in 'Auld Lang Syne' as the service came to an end. Guests were invited to attend a special dinner put on by Matt DeJohn and lodge members.
 
For additional information on the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks (B.P.O.E.), call 331-1249 or go to www.Elks.org.