‘but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint’. Isaiah 40 v 31 (NIV)
Welcome to this July newsletter, and thank you for your continued interest and support. 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; you can do this by pressing the ‘forward’ button at the bottom of this email. We hope you enjoy reading this month’s newsletter.
Many of us are currently enjoying the warm weather we don’t always associate with the UK summer months, and conference season is also upon us- as are ‘holiday at home’ weeks that many churches run. Whether we enjoy the heat or not, these summer activities are often a wonderful time of personal renewal, as we strive to renew our strength by continuing to ‘hope in the Lord’.
The New Wine UK conference commences on Saturday, and ‘Faith in Later Life’ will be exhibiting at both the first and second week, so if you are attending, do come along and say hello! And if you would like to hear a bit from us in person, then do come along to our seminar entitled ‘Faith in Later Life and why God designed old age’. This is on at 4pm on Wednesday 31st.
We are also delighted to announce that, together with Keswick Ministries, next Spring, from the 4th – 7th May (2020) we will be holding a conference entitled ‘Faith in the Second Half’, at Keswick. There are a variety of topics and excellent speakers who will be leading the different sessions. Do book up early! For more information or to book, please visit https://keswickministries.org/event/faith-in-the-second-half/ And do tell others, as God willing, this will be an immensely informative and encouraging week- in the beautiful setting of the Lake District.
Praying for Holidays at Home
It’s the highlight of many people’s year. The fun week that stands out in their diary. That opportunity that many churches offer to those in their community of more mature years: the holiday at home.
In the coming weeks, congregations across the UK (and beyond) will be gathering those in later life and offering them food, friendship, fun activities and opportunities to deepen faith in – or for the first time respond in faith to – the Lordship of Christ. Dedicated teams will even this week be planning, cooking and prepping talks. But our prep needs to be about more than just activity – like all Christian ministry, prayer is essential – unless the Lord builds the house, the labourers labour in vain, we are reminded in Psalm 127. So how can we be praying for the many Holidays at Home to come? There are many prayers we could choose but maybe Paul’s little prayer in Philemon can spur us on our way:
I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers, because I hear of your love and of the faith that you have towards the Lord Jesus and for all the saints, and I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ. (Philemon 4-6)
Being the change
Earlier in the month, I attended the launch of a report into loneliness, commissioned by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Faith and Society. The meeting was addressed by a number of Christian MPs as well as the ‘loneliness Minister’, Mims Davies. It was encouraging to see the recognition of all that Christian groups do in this space. ‘Faith in Later Life’ is working with a number of Christian charities to develop a toolkit for churches, which seeks to equip and encourage churches in their work with reaching older people who may be lonely or isolated. As this work develops I will keep you updated. In the meantime, do have a look at the resources we currently have on our website, many of which are free to download. (https://faithinlaterlife.org/resource-hub)
I also recently met with a Christian MP, Rachel Maskill, who is the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Ageing and Older people. She was very interested in Faith in Later Life, and the existence of a Christian organisation championing older people and ministries with older people. Please pray for Christians in positions of influence in government, that they, like all of us, would continually seek to renew their strength by hoping in the Lord.
Reviewing the website
We are currently thinking about how we can improve our website and if we want to make any changes or additions, such as a blog for example. What would you like to see? Is there anything you would like added, or focussed on? Do have a look through the website and then let us know- as we exist to encourage and equip you. https://faithinlaterlife.org/get-involved/stay-connected/
God bless you this month and ever.
Yours in Christ,
Director, Faith in Later Life