Good death. Isn’t that an oxymoron? Can death ever be good? When I asked a fellow pastor, he said, “Absolutely not. Death is the opposite of life; it’s an enemy.” That’s true. When my grandmother went into the hospital for a routine procedure on her heart, the doctor accidently pierced her heart. Afterward, she had a stroke, so my family...
Moving to an Assisted Living Community
No one ever dreams of moving into an assisted living community. People plan on retirement and often plan on living in their homes until their death. But then an accident occurs or physical disabilities arise with aging, and suddenly the reality of needing assistance changes their plans to age in place. For many, moving into an assisted living community feels...
People First: Residents Living with Dementia
I have attention deficit disorder and high blood pressure. I do not want people to introduce me as an ADD and high blood pressure chaplain. My mother developed vascular dementia due to cardiac problems following surgery. I do not want people to refer to my mom as a dementia person. We all have symptoms, disorders, even diseases, but they don’t...
Worship for Those Living with Dementia Brings Abundant Life
Mr. Mason was actively involved in his church community. He attended worship and Bible study regularly. If there was an event at the church, Mr. Mason was there. He assisted in many ways. His church community was important to him and had been since he was a child. When Mr. Mason was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, he continued to be...
Aging Hero: Lottie Allen, Graceful One
When I grow up, I want to be like Lottie Allen. Lottie Allen was a resident at United Church Homes' Pilgrim Manor
. Lottie moved into our health center when she was 91. Until that point, she was feisty, independent and living alone. However, as her dementia progressed, she had difficulty taking her medications and handling day-to-day life on her...
Dad: My First Aging Hero
Growing up, I always knew that I was different from my friends. My parents were quite a bit older than most of theirs. In fact, my dad was 57 and my mother 40 when I was born. My dad would tell a story about sitting in the labor and delivery waiting room with all the young fathers-to-be. Someone apparently asked...
Essentials of Aging Heroes
Aging heroes are those who go ahead of us. They include the increasing number of elders who are actively engaged in society. One common attribute of aging heroes is they make a difference by sharing their expertise and life experiences with others. We have invited our blog contributors to look around their communities, their families and friends and share those...
Humble Heroes: Thumbs Up for AARP’s 2018 Movies for Grownups Award Winner ‘Dunkirk’
In the past, I didn't consider myself a war movie enthusiast. But that was before I became a chaplain in a retirement community
where I host a monthly veteran’s group. Most of the veterans served during World War II. Each time a new veteran joins the group, each one shares some of their own war experiences. As they told...
Giving Voice to LGBTQ Older Adults Conference
Gen Silent conference set for April 14
COLUMBUS — Ohio groups advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) older adults are joining efforts for the Columbus premier of Gen Silent
, a film that explores the unique challenges faced by LGBT seniors as they navigate healthcare and housing needs, at North Congregational UCC. The documentary by award-winning director and...
Wow! The Spirituality of Wonder
I was driving home last week and was awestruck by a winter sunset. My breath hitched and I gasped, “Wow!” as my eyes traced the purple, orange and pink clouds swirling in an intricate dance. For a few minutes, my mind quieted from review of the day, plans for dinner and the latest divisive and adversarial talk coming from Washington,...