Every week I receive lovely comments and emails from people who have found SpiritualEldercare.com (thank you, Google). These letters (read more here) are like a breath of air to me. I’m moved by how many people want to provide spiritual care to elders with dementia but don’t know how to start or what to do.
That’s the entire reason I created these dementia-friendly tools and resources: so people would be able to provide dementia-specific spiritual care whether or not they have a budget and whether or not they feel “experienced” enough to do it.
Here’s a note I received just last week, from Erika K. in Ontario, Canada:
I just wanted to drop a quick note to say THANK YOU! I am the recreation therapist on staff at a retirement home serving a lower income community in Hamilton, Ontario. Most of our residents are over 80 and many of them have some stage of dementia.
When I was hired I was asked to prioritize spiritual care. With the high-quality resources you have provided, I have been able to set up a bi-weekly Bible study, and the music has made it possible to do worship services without an accompanist. As soon as I have permission to spend money on printing I will be able to do hymn sings as well.
My budget is very small, so I haven’t made a donation yet, but I wanted you to know that this website has been a Godsend and a blessing, and I recommend it to anyone in rec therapy looking to set up spiritual programming.
Another thing I would add is that those who are more cognizant continue to come as they also find value. The study guides are not too simple for them. In fact, they keep inviting others in the home which is a blessing too.
Thank you, Erika, for writing. I feel so strongly that seniors with dementia truly want and benefit from spiritual care, and in my experience it is provided far too rarely.
I’m working on updating all of the dementia-friendly Bible studies and nondenominational worship services and adding new ones, so please sign up (see button, upper right of this page) if you want to be alerted when I post something new.
All resources are free, but if you’d like and are able to make a donation, you can do that, too (suggested donation: $5).
And let me know in the comments below if you have ideas for other resources I could create.