“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
1 Peter 1 v 3 (NIV)
Welcome to this Easter edition of the Faith in Later Life newsletter, and thank you for your continued interest and support. Last month saw a spike in interest in the newsletter and across the website, and this means more people accessing our resources and information, which is very encouraging- do please continue to tell others about our work. As ever, if there is any content you would like to see in our newsletters that is currently missing, then do get in touch; and please do invite others to sign up to receive our news. Lastly, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and your loved ones a blessed and joyous Easter.
Have you visited the resources section of our website? If you are interested in specific Easter resources, our resource hub has a special version of the “Brain & Soul Boosting Series for Seniors” workbook. Brain and Soul Boosting is ideal material for use with a small group of people amongst whom you want to encourage conversation and fellowship. A biblical underpinning for each session also means that they can be used as a devotional aid for the group and some of the ideas will be helpful for a more interactive form of worship service. The BSBS series works by helping small groups of people affirm one another’s worth, build relationships with each other and with the Lord Jesus.
They’re available to download free of charge and can be found via our website by clicking here.
More churches than pubs
Following research by Peter Brierley, chief executive of The Brierley Consultancy, The National Churches Trust have stated that there are now more churches then pubs in the UK, with around 40,300 church buildings open to the public and in use. In a recent article in the Christian press, a trustee of the National Churches Trust said: “As well as being places of worship, church buildings also play a vital role in activities for the benefit of the wider community. It is estimated that nearly 90% of churches are used for community purposes such as playgroups and lunch clubs and for social and cultural activities including concerts and exhibitions.”
Does your church hold activities which seek to build relationships (and ultimately share the love of the Lord Jesus) with those in later life in the wider community? If so, please let us know so we can add it to the over 2300 activities we are already signposting to. To register your activity on our national directory, or see what is already happening in your area, do click here to visit our website.
Carers’ Week in June is a heaven-sent opportunity for Churches
As you read this more than 6 ½ million people around the country are caring, unpaid, for a family member or friend who is older, disabled or seriously ill; thousands will be living with dementia. Many family caregivers have had to give up their jobs and are also struggling financially, and caring can be isolating and lonely.
Carers Week (10th-16th June) is an annual awareness campaign to help carers get connected, and for their value to be recognised. The charity, Carers UK, say that the week is brought to life by individuals, groups and organisations throughout the country holding all sorts of events, from coffee mornings to afternoon teas and whatever other ideas occur to them. It’s an opportunity for churches to create special events and could also include inviting carers to a dedicated Sunday service. Christians are among the kindest, most giving people in the world: in one year in England and Wales collective Christian work in the community amounted to £3.5 billion, according to the fund-allocating Cinnamon Trust. Many will see Carers’ Week in June as a heaven-sent opportunity.
If your church organises any special events for carers, or any events with a focus on those in later life, please do share them for wider promotion on our Activity’s Directory. You can do that by clicking here.
Firm foundations for later life
If you are interested in attending what will be an excellent day of Bible focused encouragement relating to many aspects of later life, there is still time to join the 100s of others attending on 11th May at the Pilgrims’ Friend Society annual conference. With speakers including Dr Jennifer Bute, author Louise Morse, and a keynote address from Professor John Wyatt, this is a day not to be missed. You can book by calling 0300 303 1403 or via their website for more.
Yours in Christ,
Director, Faith in Later Life