Finding One’s Voice through Singing: A Story of Love
During worship at United Church Homes' Fairhaven Community
, we light a candle each week in Advent as we travel the four Sundays to Christmas Eve. Each candle represents a different theme during the Advent journey. While the first three Sundays reflect hope, peace and joy, the fourth Sunday this year, Dec. 23, represents the theme of love.
Where is Peace?
How can I write a blog about peace in these troubling times? Everywhere I look, I find unrest, conflict and violence. Everywhere I listen, I hear angry name-calling, truth denied and lies uplifted. God’s got it right when he chastises the prophets and priests in Jeremiah’s time, saying, “Peace, peace they say, when there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14). But...
Landmarks and Taskwork for End of LifeThis blog is the fourth in a series of reflections from the 3rd annual Symposium with Dr. Ira Byock on October 12, 2018, Abundant Aging Through the End of Life.
For many, the thought that someone may be developing as a person at the end of life might seem preposterous. Too often, we think about a slow decline and winding down...
Reflections on Love at the End of LifeThis blog is the third in a series of reflections from the 3rd annual Symposium with Dr. Ira Byock on October 12, 2018, Abundant Aging Through the End of Life.
Julia’s husband had been a Presbyterian minister, who she met at seminary. When I met Julia, I was an undergraduate, and she was in her 90s, aging with faith and clarity...
Learning Life Lessons at the Knees of the DyingThis blog is the second in a series of reflections from the 3rd annual Symposium with Dr. Ira Byock on October 12, 2018, Abundant Aging Through the End of Life.
After coming home from United Church Homes’ Ruth Frost Parker Center for Abundant Aging’s 2018 Annual Symposium
, featuring keynote Dr. Ira Byock
, my husband and I went to Ann...
Coco, Death and Memory
Disney/Pixar released Coco
in theaters in 2017. While the vibrant colors and vivid images on the screen and beautiful and typical of Disney/Pixar works, the film’s important lessons and perspectives around death and memory work to highlight familiar and unfamiliar understandings of death and family. Disney/Pixar’s Coco
follows Miguel, a boy around 12, who has a forbidden passion for music, based on...
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...
Loving Life, Loving Funerals: The Faithfulness of Dying Well
The Strangeness of Loving Funerals
A friend of mine who serves as a church musician attended a memorial service recently and following the event, offered reflections that needed something of a disclaimer. “I hope this doesn’t come across wrong,” he wrote, “but I really love funerals.” I love funerals, too; leading funeral services is one of the great privileges of...
The Value of Palliative Care
Aging takes courage and challenges individuals to identify their own values, define priorities and discern the best path through life from a body, mind and spiritual perspective. Our bodies are of great value because they are the vehicle that transports us through life. A healthy body allows for greater flexibility in discerning quality of life choices from housing options to...