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“With hope in her wing, may anyone who has ever felt the loss of a child find this place to mourn and heal”

2020 Springfield Angel of Hope Candlelight Remembrance Ceremony

In accordance with current COVID-19 restrictions, the 2020 Springfield Angel of Hope Candlelight Remembrance Ceremony on December 6th will be modified this year. We will not be utilizing tents for the attendees or the Botanical Garden building, nor will we be able to provide candles for the event.  You are still welcome to bring your own candle and a white flower to place at the base of the Angel Statue in memory of our beloved children. All attendees are asked to politely comply with current COVID-19 local mandates and state guidelines, including, but not limited to, the wearing of facial coverings, social distancing and limiting your groups to 10 people or less. These guidelines can be reviewed on the Springfield Park District or DCEO Illinois websites. 

Our ceremony will begin at 7:00 p.m with a brief statement and an opening song to honor our children. All new names added to the memorial wall since the 2019 ceremony will then be read. Any additional children’s names will be read based on the last name of the child being honored according to the designated time periods below:

7:00-7:20 – New names 
7:20-7:40 – A through C 
7:40-8:00 – D through G 
8:00-8:20 – H through J
8:20-8:40 – K through O
8:40-9:00 – P through Sn
9:00-9:20 – So through Z

If you would like to be in attendance and have your child’s name read, please arrive during the appropriate time period. Volunteers will be available to direct you.  Luminaries on the sidewalks will be spaced 10 feet apart and we ask that you use these to properly social distance when standing in line.  If you have further questions, please contact Doug Reynolds at 217/553-1329.

As a participant in the Springfield Angel of Hope ceremony and event, you release and hold Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP, its officers, agents, representatives and volunteers harmless from any personal injury or property loss related to your participation in the above event. You also acknowledge your requirement to adhere to current state guidelines concerning COVID-19 restrictions.
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On October 4, 2008, the Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP dedicated an Angel of Hope Statue in the Washington Park Botanical Garden. The angel statue honors the lives of all children gone too soon and serves as a place of hope and healing for parents, families, and friends dealing with the tragic loss of a child. Over 600 area children’s names are commemorated on the Memorial Wall located at the Springfield angel statue site. Information on how to add a child’s name to the memorial wall can be found under “Giving Opportunities”. The angel in Springfield joins over 100 Angel of Hope Statues in other communities across the country (including 10 in Illinois).

The original Angel of Hope Statue is located in Salt Lake City, Utah. The statue was first introduced to the world in the book The Christmas Box, a worldwide best-selling story by author Richard Paul Evans. In the book, a woman mourns the loss of her child at the base of an angel monument. Although the story is mostly fiction, the angel monument described in the book once existed but was later destroyed in a flood. In response to reports that grieving parents were seeking out the angel as a place to remember and heal, author Richard Paul Evans commissioned a new angel statue.

Our Angel

With the hope of providing bereaved families a place to remember and honor the children they have lost, the Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP was established in August 2007. Founded by parents who have experienced the heartbreaking pain of losing a child, our not-for-profit organization raised all the necessary funds to pay for and install the angel statue. With strong community encouragement and support, construction began on the Springfield angel statue site in April 2008 at the Washington Park Botanical Garden. The site was completed and dedicated in October 2008.

With the Memorial Wall nearly filled to capacity in 2016, there was a need to expand the angel statue site to continue to provide a peaceful, hopeful place honoring our beloved children. Through the continued overwhelming support of individual and community donors, the angel statue site expansion was completed in October 2017 with the addition of two Memorial Walls, as well as a new walkway and landscaping. With this completion, the Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP can continue to help bring healing and serenity to those mourning the loss of their child through commemoration at the statue site.

Springfield’s angel statue is the only one of its kind located in central Illinois. The bronze angel, with its child’s face and outstretched wings of hope, measures 4’3″ tall and has a wingspan of 5’2″. If you look closely you can find the word “HOPE” written on the angel’s right wing. Children’s names are honored on a Memorial Wall located behind the angel statue. Situated in a beautiful natural setting, the Springfield Angel of Hope Statue provides a peaceful place for grieving, remembering, and healing. The children whom the angel statue commemorates should be playing, working, and living in our community – now they will be honored at the Springfield angel statue site for generations to come.

Dedication

On October 4, 2008, the Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP dedicated an Angel of Hope Statue in the Washington Park Botanical Garden. The warm sunshine and memories of beloved children drew nearly 700 people to this special event. After Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP President Doug Reynolds welcomed attendees, he and Vice President Elise LoBue unveiled the Angel of Hope Statue for the first time.

Dr. Wayne P. Hoffman, Senior Pastor at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, provided the opening and closing prayers, while guest speakers Lisa Johnson from Christmas Box House International in Salt Lake City and city officials touched on the significance of Springfield’s angel statue. Remarks highlighted the healing power of the Angel of Hope Statue, the natural beauty of the Springfield angel site, the tremendous community support for the angel statue, and the importance of the angel statue to our central Illinois community. Thirteen-year-old Jordan Lucore read a touching poem she wrote about what the Angel of Hope Statue means to her and what it would have meant to her twin brother Alex, now honored at the angel site. The children’s choir from Our Savior’s Lutheran Church spoke for all of the children remembered that day with the song, “Jesus Loves Me.”

The dedication ceremony ended with the release of white doves in honor of the love we feel for our children, the peace we know they have found, and the hope the angel statue represents. The speakers’ remarks, children’s song, dove release, Carillon music, and brilliant sunshine combined for a wonderful welcome of the Angel of Hope Statue to the natural peacefulness of Springfield’s Washington Park Botanical Garden. As speaker Lisa Johnson observed, “It’s as though she has always been here.” This honored event will be remembered by many as a day of hope, healing, peace and remembrance.

Candlelight Remembrance Ceremony

Each year the public is invited to attend a candlelight remembrance ceremony on December 6 at 7 p.m. at the Angel of Hope Statue located in the Washington Park Botanical Garden. Similar ceremonies will be held at angel statue locations around the country at this time. The Springfield ceremony lasts about 30 minutes and includes a brief invocation, a short reading, and a reading of the children’s names on the Memorial Wall. Programs will be available that include the children’s names added to the Memorial Wall in the past year, as well as new donors.

Candles for the ceremony will be provided. Attendees are invited to bring a white flower to place at the base of the angel statue in memory of their beloved children. The ceremony is held regardless of weather conditions, and a tent will be available to provide some shelter from the elements. As no seating is provided, those guests needing to sit are encouraged to bring a lawn chair.

Giving Opportunities

The Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP continues to accept donations to cover expenditures such as engraving costs for annual updates to the names listed on the Memorial Wall, expenses associated with the annual candlelight remembrance ceremony, ongoing landscape costs, and general site maintenance. You may make your contribution in memory of a child. Children’s names are commemorated on the Memorial Wall located behind the angel statue. There is no minimum donation required to have a child’s name listed on the wall that will be updated annually in time for the December 6th candlelight remembrance ceremony. Children’s names must be received by October 15th each year to be included on that year’s update.

Please mail the completed Donation Form to:

Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP
P.O. Box 9714
Springfield, IL 62791-9714

The Springfield Angel of Hope, NFP is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit charity and your gift to the organization in support of the Angel of Hope is tax-deductible to the extent of the law. Thank you for your support.


A Walk to Remember

In addition to the Remembrance Ceremony which celebrates the lives of children of all ages, the Springfield Angel of Hope also hosts a memorial walk specifically honoring babies gone too soon.

A Walk to Remember takes place in October, which is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, and commemorates the lives of babies lost due to miscarriage, stillbirth, and infant death.

For more information about A Walk to Remember or to register for this event, please click the link below.

Directions

The Springfield Angel of Hope Statue is located within the Washington Park Botanical Garden at 1740 West Fayette Avenue in Springfield, Illinois. The closest parking to the angel site is in the Botanical Garden parking lot adjacent to West Fayette Avenue.

Contact Us

    Doug Reynolds, President

    at f16ratt@mac.com

    (217)553-1329

     

    Elise LoBue, Vice President

    elobue@gmail.com

    (217)381-2081