Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Church and the Elderly

Ben Franks has written a great blog piece called "Does It Really Take a Village?" about the church's need to fulfill its biblical mission to the elderly. As the baby boomers begin to shift into the senior citizen class, and therefore become a larger demographic percentage of the American cultural structure, it is becoming more important than ever that the Church have Biblical values about age and our responsibilities to care for the elderly. This is hardly a peripheral issue, and we Reformed cannot allow ourselves to dodge the culture's understanding of sexuality and money and autonomy and truth, and yet still retain the culture's abandonment of the elderly.


  1. Adam,

    I find this call particularly challenging in light of our culture's preoccupation with youth and segmentation. One of my chief criticism's of the Emerging Church has always been it's devaluation of previous generations and preoccupation with the young and the hip.

    Unfortunately, I am not sure if we, who are in the Reformed world, are any better. I see just as many Reformed churches adhering, in practice if not in theory, to the homogeneous principle of church growth and tailoring their ministries to a particular age segment. It is rare for me to find a Reformed church that practices multi-generational ministry where all age segments are ministering to one another.

    In that respect, traditions such as the Brethren and the Hutterites, seem to have a better grasp of what it means to care for whole Church, regardless of age or "usefulness."

  2. One of the ways in which I've been guilty of "age-ism" for lack of a better word is that when my wife and I were visiting churches in our community, we would deem a church 'dead' in our minds if it was mostly "old" people and if there weren't very many young families.

    My confession for the day.


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