Breaking Barriers - Summer 2018

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Aging and Disability: The average age of people in churches and throughout North America keeps increasing, and the percentage of people with disabilities increases with age. This issue of Breaking Barriers tells stories of ministry with, for, and by church members 65 and older.

Christ’s Body Has Big, Long Arms
Roze Meyer Bruins appreciates the variety of Central Reformed Church’s senior adult ministries, from home communion to prayer shawls, and from intergenerational prayer connections to gift-based service to others.

Freedom to Serve Brings Life
Now at 10 years and counting, Per and Chris Knudsen are blessed by Cedar Grove Reformed Church’s tremendous buy-in to ministry on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

Caring Role Models Lead the Way
As the staff leader of Marble Collegiate Church’s 60+ Fellowship, Colleen Cosgrove looks to the congregation as role models in serving each other and providing a sense of belonging.

Frailty Can Be Our Friend
Ken Koeman of Sonlight Community CRC has discovered that even though age-related frailty may be unwelcome, it also can be a gift.

Editor’s Note: Taking Our Time
Terry DeYoung says one of the most obvious lessons the church can learn from senior adults is the value of taking our time and practicing gentleness.

Adapting Ministry after a Stroke (web only, see below)
After his stroke, pastor Jim Beltman and his wife Gayle received generous expressions of love and help from their congregation, and he discovered new ways to serve.

Disability Concerns Receives 5 Awards (web only, see below)
Read some of the judges' comments in the article below about awards received by Disability Concerns for Breaking Barriers and our blog. 

Next Issues:

Fall 2018—Small group ministry. In healthy small groups, people can share life, study the Bible, and discern God’s guidance in their lives. How is your church engaging people with and without disabilities such as hearing loss, intellectual disability, dementia, and mental illnesses in small group ministry? Please send us a note (400 words) by June 20.

Winter 2019—Disability Advocacy. Are you serving formally or informally as a disability advocate in your church? Please tell us about it. What gives you joy? What have you found effective? Why did you get started with this work? Please send us a note (400 words) by September 20.

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