Based on Richard Paul Evans’ best-selling novel The Christmas Box, there are more than 120 Christmas Box Angel of Hope statues across the country, including statues in Canada and Japan. There are currently six Christmas Box Angel of Hope statues in Minnesota.
In The Christmas Box, a widow mourns the loss of her child at the base of an angel monument and discovers the precious gifts of life alongside a young struggling family that moves in with her.
As more and more people read the book and passed it on, demand grew for an angel memorial as a place to grieve and heal. Evans commissioned the monument and Ortho and Jared Fairbanks, a father and son, created the sculpture. The first Angel of Hope was dedicated in Salt Lake City, Utah on December 6, 1994, corresponding with the date of the child’s death in The Christmas Box.
With the face of a child, upturned palms and outstretched wings, the Angel of Hope offers solace to the grieving. The angel stands as a symbol of hope and healing for parents and families who have experienced the death of a loved one. Look closely at the angel’s right wing and see the word “Hope.”
The angel in the Maple Grove Arboretum was donated by Rosemarie Rosengren in loving memory of her grandson, Andrew. Located just north of County Road 30 at 9400 Fernbrook Lane, the angel was dedicated on May 6, 2001.
You will not 'get over' the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to. - Elizabeth Kuebler-Ross & David Kessler