News Story

Latter-day Saint Woman Constructs Angel Dresses

Construction of Angel Dresses: A Labour of Love

Debbie Camp of the Terwillegar Park Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Edmonton, Alberta, knows the grief of losing a child. Many years ago, death touched her family when she delivered a stillborn baby. For Camp, this experience fostered a desire to help others experiencing a similar loss.

Using her skills as a seamstress, Camp joined Alberta Angel Dresses. As a volunteer for this community organization, she creates beautiful gowns for final photos and burial services.

Alberta Angel Dresses notes on their Facebook page that “there is no greater gift that can be given to a grieving family than affirming the importance of the life of their child by offering this simple gift.”

Watch Camp describe the process and her experience of volunteering in this short video.

“Donated wedding dresses are deconstructed and then fashioned into beautiful white dresses that are provided to the grieving families at no charge,” Camp explained.

Camp has sewn hundreds of these special gowns, each one a gift from her heart and one small act of kindness to someone in need. For her, the dedicated time has been healing and cathartic, helping her to recognize the Lord’s hand in her life.

Sister Christina B. Franco, former second counsellor in the Primary general presidency, has spoken of helping and serving others: “What will matter is that we came with a desire to serve, that we noticed those [in need]. ... And it will certainly matter that we do all that we do with the special ingredient of service coupled with love and sacrifice. … It [is about] the love behind the action” (“The Joy of Unselfish Service,” October 2018 general conference).

Today, Camp oversees the Alberta branch of Angel Dresses Canada. This non-profit organization relies on members of the community — donors of wedding gowns, seamstresses who handcraft Angel Dresses and neonatal intensive care units and hospitals that provide comfort to grieving families — coming together to provide the precious dresses.

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