MAY IS OLDER ADULT MONTH – HOORAY!
Congrats to all of us older adults! This is OUR month to serve and celebrate as the U.S. recognizes aging as a gift to celebrate rather than a burden to bear! Isn’t it nice of “them” to designate at least one month to recognize us as being significant ?! Our task, however, continues to be enabling and empowering people of all ages to celebrate aging as a gift from the Lord of ALL ages – and on each and every day and month!
In fact, the theme for this Month’s Celebration of aging is “Engage at Every Age!” Very appropriate, don’t you think? I trust that you too are seeing more and more articles, videos, presentations, and that you are hearing more people in your home, church, and community discussing the issue of “aging” with others. It’s a positive sign that we older adults are becoming more of a topic of discussion and are being taken more seriously by people of all ages. There also are more books being written about and for older adults. Check out your favorite bookstore and see what others are saying and reading. By the way, if you’ve read any of these – “The End of Old Age”(thanks Dick Koehneke), “Aging Thoughtfully,” “Disrupt Aging”, and “Vesper Time” (Thanks, Tim Hartner), let me know your reactions.
Here are some further discussion quotes and notes being heard around the St. Arbucks’ tables these days. We really can learn a lot from each other, if we just listen to what is being said!
- Ashton Applewhite, speaker/author says it well: “The underlying message of growing old is to lose value as a human being, which is a pretty terrible thing to grow up being! This can damage a person’s ego and future. If we don’t stop and challenge these ideas, they become parts of our identity.”
- Another quote heard recently, “The goal is health, not youth; the enemy is disease, not aging”.
- How about this one: “No need to search for the ‘Fountain of Youth”. Better to seek out the “Fountain of USE-full ness!
- A stinger: “Gains in longevity have occurred, not because of personal choices but because of public sanitation, clean water, and control of infectious diseases.”
- A new term popping up in older adult culture is the concept of “age-friendly churches”! How is your congregation doing? How would you rate your parish in terms of priorities and focus? Who is responsible for older adult ministries in your congregation? If you do not know the answer, what can you do to at least have people start asking the question?
- ”Ageism stems for the perception that older people are irrelevant.”
- ”There is a devastating mindset among many that “the old” are a burden “the young” must carry.” Neither “youth” nor “older adults” are the problem, but they both are the solution!”
- ”We basically discriminate against our future selves!”
- It is a positive sign that the term, “anti-aging”, is being dropped by AARP as well as other organizations.”
- Let us keep “Aging out Loud” with people of all ages. Jeff Greenberg, New Yorker magazine, November, 2017, says it this way: “Why Ageism Never Gets Old -How to Deal with Aging”: 1) Have the elderly live among and with the younger; 2) Bolster self-esteem throughout the culture to diminish the terror of aging; and 3) calmly accept our inevitable death.
Romans 14:8 is a great way to close our St. Arbucks’s discussion: “If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord”!
And that’s what’s brewing at St. Arbucks these days!