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World-Renowned Grief Expert to Speak at 9th Annual Littner Lecture for Bereavement
March 27, 2019

Dr. Robert A. Neimeyer, Director of the Portland (Oregon) Institute for Loss and Transition and Professor of Psychology at the University of Memphis, will present “Loss, Grief and the Quest for Meaning” at the ninth annual Dr. and Mrs. Max Littner Memorial Lecture Series for Bereavement, which is co-sponsored by St. Luke’s University Health Network.

The lecture is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, at Central Moravian Church, 73 W. Church Street in Bethlehem.

Note: News media are invited to interview Dr. Neimeyer by phone from the St. Luke’s Development Office at 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 3. For more information about the press event, contact Melissa Siegfried, Development Director, at MelissaSiegfried@Sluhn.org or 484-526-3691.

"Dr. Neimeyer is a world-renowned expert on end-of-life and grief issues,” said Wendy Littner-Thomson, founder of the lecture series. “His hour-long lecture will focus on not only what’s effective when coping with loss but also on ways to adapt to loss that are meaningful for those who are going through it.”

In his lecture, Dr. Neimeyer will draw on contemporary understandings of grieving as a meaning-making process and consider what this implies for individuals and families negotiating loss as they strive to manage the emotional challenges of mourning and reconstruct a continuing bond with a loved one who is physically absent but psychologically present, Littner-Thomson said.  Ultimately, he will teach his audience how people can move from grief to growth and reaffirm a life of meaning that has been challenged and changed by bereavement.

Dr. Neimeyer is also a published poet. Copies of his poetry collection as well as his book, Lessons of Loss: A Guide to Coping, may be available for purchase and signing after the lecture.

Audience members also will have the chance to participate in a “question, answer and dialogue session” with Dr. Neimeyer and be able to ask for his thoughts on personal concerns and issues. The Q&A will be about 30 minutes.

The Dr. and Mrs. Max Littner Memorial Lecture Series for Bereavement was created to raise consciousness for the big issues of life: living meaningfully and well and sparking necessary conversations with loved ones about issues that truly are a matter of life and death. The annual lecture features prominent guests who discuss the importance of mind and body in healing and care, and ways people can cultivate hope, take action, and be more responsible for their mental and physical health.

Tickets are $10. For more information and to buy tickets, go to http://www.slhn.org/littnerlectureseries. Tickets will be mailed in advance of the lecture. 

Cosponsors also include: Heintzelman Funeral Home, Wendy Littner-Thomson Counseling Services, LLC and Cancer Support Community Greater Lehigh Valley.


About St. Luke’s

Founded in 1872, St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) is a fully integrated, regional, non-profit network of more than 15,000 employees providing services at 10 hospitals and more than 300 outpatient sites.  With annual net revenue greater than $2 billion, the Network’s service area includes 10 counties: Lehigh, Northampton, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Montgomery, Monroe and Schuylkill counties in Pennsylvania and Warren and Hunterdon counties in New Jersey.  Dedicated to advancing medical education, St. Luke’s is the preeminent teaching hospital in central-eastern Pennsylvania.  In partnership with Temple University, St. Luke’s created the region’s first and only regional medical school campus.  It also operates the nation’s longest continuously operating School of Nursing, established in 1884, and 28 fully accredited graduate medical educational programs with 226 residents and fellows.  St. Luke’s is the only health care system in central-eastern Pennsylvania to earn Medicare’s five-star rating (the highest) for quality, efficiency and patient satisfaction.  In 2018, St. Luke’s was named a Top Hospital in the Teaching Hospital category by the Leapfrog Group.  It has repeatedly earned the 100 Top Major Teaching Hospital designation from IBM Watson Health (formerly Truven Health Analytics) – six times total and four years in a row including 2018.  It has also been cited by IBM Watson Health as a 50 Top Cardiovascular Program.  Utilizing the EPIC electronic medical record (EMR) system for both inpatient and outpatient services, the Network is a multi-year recipient of the Most Wired award recognizing the breadth of the SLUHN’s information technology applications such as telehealth, online scheduling and online pricing information.  St. Luke’s is also recognized as one of the state’s lowest cost providers.