Older Adult Ministries
In a culture enchanted with the idea of youth, the Church of the Brethren chooses to live another way by valuing and welcoming the gifts of older adults. To encourage a positive vision of aging within the church, staff raises awareness of and develops resources on issues related to aging, in addition to providing a support network for those working with older adults.
May is Older Adult Month
Celebrate older adults in your congregation
"One generation shall laud God’s work to another and shall declare God’s might acts." Ps. 145:4
Each May, the Church of the Brethren observes Older Adult Month, an opportunity to celebrate God’s gift of aging and the contributions of older adults in our congregations and our world. By recognizing the gifts of older adults, we honor their legacies and on-going contributions to our faith, family and civic communities. Additional resources to address the challenges and honor the blessings that come with age, please our entire list of resources.
This year, members who are age 50+ are invited to our biennial national older adult conference, Inspiration 2017. Now in our twenty-fifth year (our fourteenth conference), we will meet Sept. 4 - 8 in Western North Carolina for a wonderful week together. This is a Spirit-filled gathering of adults who love learning and discerning together, exploring God’s call for their lives and living out that call by sharing their energy, insight, and legacy with their families, communities, and the world. A video and program materials are available online: www.brethren.org/noac/; for a free DVD call: 1-800-323-8039 x.306 or email Inspiration2017@brethren.org.
Holy God, Eternal Parent, Author of love and grace, we pray for grandparents, great grandparents and all who stand in the line of generations...Go to the prayer
"Unexpected travels in healing…"
End-of-life video resource available
This hour-long video of the 2011 NOAC presentation by David Fuchs and Curtis Dubble is a helpful resource for individuals, families, deacons, and congregations as they explore end-of-life issues. Read more about the 2011 presentation here. Download the order form.
Additional resources for end-of-life decision making and death and dying are available from Brethren Press.
Departing With Dignity—A Service of Celebration
The Good Shepherd Home in Fostoria, Ohio, has created a brief service that celebrates the life of each resident when they die. Before the deceased’s body is removed from the Home, family members, staff, and residents who wish to participate gather to pray and say goodbye. Click to download a copy of their service, Departing with Dignity: A Service of Celebration (PDF).
Connecting Generations is an occasional meditation, containing a scripture, meditation, and prayer about some aspect of growing older: spiritual tasks of aging, role changes, the challenge of caregiving, transitions, and leaving our legacy. There are also questions to think about and discuss, as well as reading suggestions.