A Gathering Place in Memory


All throughout my childhood and beyond, I recall how much my Mom loved having fires and how she loved to have the family gather around the fireplace. I also remember how much she loved candles throughout her home. With that in mind, it seems only fitting that in her memory, we created a gathering place with a fire-pit as the focal point of the space.

Heather, Denis, Steve and Meg working on the fire-pit in June

In June, in anticipation of the 28th which would have been her 70th birthday, my Dad, brother, daughter, Greg and I, along with Amy and Cecilia worked together to create the raised fire-pit and four gardens in her memory. On June 28th, we held a family gathering in her memory. Antolin led the incredibly beautiful service.

The Memorial Service held on June 28th

Ever since June, we have wanted to complete the space so that it has places for people to sit and gather for years to come. Last Monday, my sister Heidi, her husband Rod and their two kids, Gabrielle (17) and Zac (15) arrived in Guatemala for their first ever visit. They came to volunteer and to celebrate Christmas with us. It seemed only fitting that we, as a family, put our attention on the space created in Mom’s memory.

Heather's sister, Heidi hard at work

Rod and Gabrielle Dubland

During this time, we have been working together to create the earth-bag benches which should easily accommodate up to 70+ people. I picture us holding all special gatherings in this space; birthday celebrations, story telling, graduations, etc. etc. I know for certain, my Mom would love this space and would feel deeply touched that so many worked so hard to put this special space together in her honour.

-Heather Alicia

p.s. Last Friday we held a party in honour of our workers. We now have a wonderful place to do such things!

The fire-pit benches all in place, ready for plastering.

Let's throw a party now!


10 Responses

  1. Gin Nielsen says:

    Susan would be beaming with pride right about now! What a beautiful tribute for your Mom.

  2. Dad says:

    To every member of our family who has played a part in building this beautiful gathering place, may I, on behalf of Mum, Grandma and my best friend, say THANK YOU.

    Thank you also, to many friends who have contributed in so many ways to make this become a reality. Thank you too, to those who have added their bit and of course to the awesome team of workers lead by Antolin.

    As Heather has said Susan would be deeply touched. I am deeply touched by the honour it pays to her. I look forward to being present at celebrations that will encompass important occasions in the lives of so many especially the children of the Village.

  3. Awesome work. It looks beautiful and well designed, your mother would more than have appreciated it your thoughts and efforts.

  4. Leah Green says:

    May your gatherings send beams of light to all hearts. Your progress on this project is wondrous to behold.

  5. Rachel Rocco says:

    Wow so beautiful simple and fantastic! I hope to visit around that fire pit someday…..you guys ROCK!

  6. Thanks so much Rachel! We’d love to visit with you here sometime!

Leave a reply