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Hope as a Journey

Assessing for Hope As a chaplain working with older adults in long-term care, part of my call is to complete spiritual assessments with residents. In obtaining their spiritual histories, I use the HOPE model. The tool allows me to talk with residents about what brings them hope and joy among other things. When a resident arrives to the community, we...
 

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Birth of a New Community

A Community's Birth Communities of people are fluid. We change houses or jobs, get a promotion at work or join a church. Years later, some may choose to move into a retirement home. In each of these instances, we experience new community. As people move into Pilgrim Manor, they immediately become aware of entering a different lifestyle. As they make...
 

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Community of Saints

Our assisted living community celebrated the life of one of our beloved residents a few weeks ago.  Preparing for worship, I thought about how a community of saints can impacts the lives of all its members. A saint’s enduring goodness is built upon the memories of other beloved members. It celebrates the care and kindness of its current residents and...
 

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What Does Age Have to Do with It?

The Impact of Clergy Age on Churches When I was ordained back in 1981, I accepted the call to serve St. Andrew’s UCC, a small congregation in the old industrial city of Reading, Pennsylvania. I was following a beloved, long-tenured pastor who had served for 27 years there. I was 26 years old at that time. When the local newspaper...
 

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Small Groups: Big Connections

Connecting Through Small Groups: A Story Last week, at the continuing care retirement community where I serve, the speaker for our senior class group that day called two minutes before class was to start and canceled. With a room full of residents waiting on the speaker, I told them she was unable to come. Rather than disbanding the group on...
 

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I Will Remember for You Now…Until You Remember

My mom was diagnosed with vascular dementia several years ago, and she has had increasing memory problems. Mom is one of close to six million people living with dementia in the United States.  Last Thanksgiving, Mom struggled to remember which grandchild was in each of her three daughters’ families. So, we took a family picture and labeled it with our...
 

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Community of Friends

Community is a core concept that we value deeply at United Church Homes. When the Board, staff and residents gathered in 2015 to articulate a new vision, mission and values for the organization, community was mentioned a lot! In the final versions, it remained in our vision — United Church Homes: Where the Spirit creates abundant life in community. It...
 

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Signs of New Life

We moved to a new city last fall. My fall and winter attention focused on getting the inside of the house in order. We knew that we would focus on the yard and outside projects in the spring. With our list of projects complete for the first months in our home, the winter seemed to linger past February, well into...
 

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Welcoming Strangers

Welcoming strangers is central to the Judeo-Christian tradition. It widens a circle of community with others. To include those we do not yet know creates opportunities to meet, greet and expand our understanding of others. This concept is grounded in the ancient Jewish understanding of shalom. The Biblical concept of shalom embraces a communal sense of mind, body and spiritual...
 

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Contentment

How we approach a significant move, such as when to move into a retirement setting, can be felt as either a painful loss (discontentment) or a new beginning (contentment). What makes the difference? Perhaps it has to do with choice and appreciating what it means to be content. We welcome guest blogger, Rev. Al Irby, for his reflections on the decision...
 

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2018 Community Benefits Report

Comprehensive Campaign for Abundant Life

Learn more about the historic effort to raise $20 million over five years through the Comprehensive Campaign for Abundant Life at United Church Homes.

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