What Christian Vocation Looks Like for the Elderly

The faith and work movement can tend to celebrate the entrepreneurial, which by extension often means celebrating the young (because, after all, they’re usually the ones with the energy to start new things.)  The Christian Century ran an excellent article a little while ago about what vocation looks like in older adults:

If vocation is about God’s call to persons (and communities) claiming us across the whole of our lives, surely God calls older adults to vocations of service and love too. But life and vocation in older adulthood are distinctive. [Read more]

It’s an excerpt from Joyce Ann Mercer’s chapter in a forthcoming book called Calling All Years Good: Christian Vocation throughout Life’s Seasons, edited by Kathleen A. Cahalan and Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore. We’ll try to review the whole book here, of course.

Meanwhile, there is much to ponder in Mercer’s comments about how bodies, and the disability that often attends the aging of bodies, changes how we practice our own vocation and how other practice vocation towards us. For many elderly people, they take on “a vocation of forming others in faith by evoking in them the practices, habits, and dispositions of faithful people”—one of which is getting the rest of us to slow down and reconsider our overscheduled lives and our illusions of independence.

All kinds of diversity are important to the FAW movement. Age is one of those kinds.

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