ASN Mission & Vision
Mission: The mission of the Aging and Spirituality Network is to work with the local churches of the Central Pacific Conference to develop and provide resources and programs that encourage older adults to explore a renewed vision of aging through learning, sustained spiritual and faith development and service to their communities and the world.
Vision: The vision of the Aging and Spirituality Network is for a United Church of Christ that celebrates and honors our spiritual elders from mid-life through the end of life, nurturing and inspiring older adults to enrich their lives and their communities.
The Aging and Spirituality Network asserts that the time of life from mid-life (beginning about age 50) to death is different from earlier adulthood, that this period actually represents several significant life transitions and stages that are unique to later adulthood, and this period brings a series of spiritual issues—both predictable and unpredictable—that are different from those experienced in prior life stages. We also believe that aging can bring positive and powerful changes in perspective—if one has access to ways of thinking about later life that run counter to the negative view of aging and later life so often promulgated by our culture.
Some common transitions and events with spiritual meaning in the second half of life:
- Retirement and concomitant change in life priorities
- Loss of life structure, social identity and colleague social contacts through retirement
- Possible uncertain purpose and meaning of life in post-retirement years
- Loss of friends, family members and neighbors through moves, illness or death
- Physical diminishment and/or loss of sensory acuity or physical strength
- New roles or identities—grand-parenting or volunteering for a cause
These changes—both those that are positive and those that are unwelcome—call for a different perspective on aging—one that flows from the power of the spirit. We need not succumb to our culture’s negative view of aging. By exploring and embracing a positive view of later life and a commitment to spiritual growth in the second half of life, we can discover deeper meaning, fulfillment and purpose as we age.
The Aging & Spirituality Network issues a periodic newsletter featuring information about related resources, coming events and program ideas from local churches. Click here to see the most recent issue or other past issues.
Aging & Spirituality Network – Resources
For information on the topics listed below related to aging and spirituality, click on the links. If you know of other resources you would like to have included in these topics, or if you would like to suggest another topic for this webpage, please email your suggestions here.
Other Resource webpages will soon be added for:
Spiritual issues in aging
Issues in aging: Aging parents and partners
Issues in aging: Housing options in aging
Older adult programs at CPC member churches
Guidelines for starting aging and spirituality activities in your church
Long-term studies on aging well
ASN History & Founding Churches
The CPC Aging and Spirituality Network was born in November, 2015, with an inaugural meeting attended by representatives from six founding churches. The purpose of the network is to provide information and resources about the connection between aging and spirituality to member churches of the Central Pacific Conference of the UCC.
Founding churches of the CPC Aging and Spirituality Network include: