Aging Well

Aging Well term image

Aging Well is a series of articles on ministry by and with senior adults, written by UMR Columnist Missy Buchanan.

Aging Well: Valuing seniors as a counter-cultural act of love

A few years ago I was having coffee and casual conversation with the marketing director of a large retirement community that has both independent and assisted living facilities on its well-manicured campus. She was a vivacious forty-something woman who was struggling to meet her quarterly sales quota. In a moment of frustration, she blurted out […]

Aging Well: Life in the fourth quarter

I have never met 84 year-old Dede Casad in person, but judging from her book, The Fourth Quarter: The Hail Mary for Seniors, I imagine her to be a little like Judge Judy. Spunky, funny and no-nonsense. At least that is the tone of her new book which challenges the notion that retirees somehow deserve […]

Aging Well: The value of intergenerational ministries

Recently, I was at an airport in North Carolina waiting to board a flight to Atlanta making a connection to Dallas. I had just made it through the security line when I received a text message from the airline announcing an hour-long delay. Taking  note of the new arrival time, I calculated that I would […]

Aging Well — Supporting those in senior communities

Each Sunday morning before worship begins, I make the rounds to visit with older friends at church. Not long ago I hugged an older woman and asked about her upcoming week. After a brief pause, she forced a smile and told me that she was going to attend an Open House at a new senior […]

Aging Well: Refired not Retired!

  When the Rev. Fred Trevino retired in 1998 as Senior Pastor of Paradise Valley UMC, the largest church in the Desert Southwest Conference, he envisioned himself leisurely driving his new lawn tractor across the three-acre lawn of his wife’s family homestead in Brenham, Texas. He dreamed of lazy afternoons spent relaxing under the expansive […]

Aging Well: Our faith helps us resist the temptations of aging

I couldn’t help but laugh when my 89-year-old friend made a confession. “Some days I need a tractor to pull me out of my rut!” she exclaimed exasperatedly. It’s true for all of us. Without realizing it, we spin our wheels, repeating the same behavior, until we’ve created ruts so deep that the only thing […]

Aging Well: Churches shouldn’t run from the topic of aging

The photo in the newsletter caught my attention. It was an image of a yellow sticky note with handwritten words, “Do today: Plan for God to use me in old age!” My mind began to spin. Most people don’t like thinking about aging, much less planning for ways to be used by God in a […]

Aging Well: Expert – “Churches can do more to support seniors”

When the Rev. Larry Minnix first accepted a call into ministry, he was a 16-year-old boy sitting by the campfire at a youth retreat. He never imagined that one day he would be trying to light a fire under lawmakers and White House administrations on behalf of an aging population. In fact, Mr. Minnix says […]

Aging Well: Senior keeps Sundays ringing

As you drive the streets of picturesque Jefferson, Texas, you will likely see the historic First United Methodist Church with its steeple stretching into the sky. At a glance, the white wooden structure sitting on a hillside seems as though it could be the opening scene of a nostalgic Hallmark movie. On Sunday mornings the […]

Aging Well: Tips for seniors on greeting young visitors in church

Several Facebook friends recently posted something that caught my attention. It was a newsletter from the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations offering advice for older adults who are greeting young adults at church. Though United Methodists may differ with the UUAC on many theological issues, I wondered if the suggestions for older adults might spark […]