Blue Christmas Service: Embracing Hope Amidst Lost

Shandonumc   -  

Christmas, often a time of joy and celebration, can also bring forth deep sorrow for those who have experienced loss, and for Larry Talbert, Christmas Day in 2018 marked the unexpected passing of his vibrant wife, Carolyn “CC” Talbert. In the wake of this profound loss, Larry, alongside his sons Braden, Garrett, and Trey, faced the challenges of the holiday season with heavy hearts.

Turning to the Blue Christmas service in 2019, Larry sought solace and a space to honor and remember CC while navigating the weight of grief. The service transformed into a sanctuary where he found comfort, hope, and a sense of togetherness with others experiencing similar loss.

“It’s a moment to honor and remember the one you lost,” Larry shared. “It is okay to be sad at the service. It’s a moment where you’re remembering your loved one. Sad feelings will come. But if you allow your heart to be open, you can experience peace and hope again.”

Encouraging others facing similar grief, Larry emphasized the importance of not isolating oneself and being surrounded by those who love and support you. He urges attendees to bring a friend or a loved one to hold their hand through this emotional service. Also, if you have a friend who is dealing with a loss, consider inviting and attending the service with them. For those without such companionship, Larry advocated connecting with a Stephen Minister at Shandon, a resource that had been profoundly helpful in his own healing. “CC was a Stephen Minister. I spent time with a Stephen Minister after her passing, and I would highly encourage anyone dealing with grief to connect with a Stephen minister during the holidays.”

“There’s more to my story,” he shared. “God will allow you to experience joy again.” These words resonated not just with him but also with his new wife, Trellise, who had lost her husband three months before CC passed away. Trellise and her late husband had once been mutual friends with Larry and CC. Thirty years later, they found themselves widow and widower when a friend reconnected them. Now, after enduring heartache, they’re rediscovering joy together. “Through God’s amazing grace, Trellise and I have experienced an abundance of joy after heartache,” a testament that even in the darkest times, there’s still an unwritten story filled with hope.


The upcoming Blue Christmas service on Thursday, December 21, at 6:00 p.m. in the Sanctuary aims to provide support, comfort, and a space for reflection during this emotionally challenging time. Larry’s story echoes the sentiment that healing, though challenging, is possible with the support of a compassionate community and faith in the promise of brighter days. We invite anyone navigating loss during this holiday season to join us for this candlelight service of support and encouragement.

For further details or inquiries about the Blue Christmas service or to connect with a Stephen Minister, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Rev. Smoke Kanipe at or (803) 722-1063.