Living Peacefully with your Family as Your Parents Age

Love’s Way, a new book by Carolyn Parr and Sig Cohen, is the single best resource for aging peacefully that I know of. These two experienced mediators have written a practical and comprehensive guide for anyone conscious of moving from midlife autonomy to increasing interdependence with family or friends. As the subtitle suggests, it’s about “living peacefully with your family as your parents age.”

Carolyn, a local judge and long-time member of Festival Church, draws from her experience in Church of the Saviour as well as her legal practice. Her mediation partner, Sig Cohen, is a retired Foreign Service officer with a keen eye for family dynamics. By alternating chapters, they cover a broad range of issues, from emotional roadblocks and sibling rivalry to economic and legal matters. The personal stories make it accessible and engaging.

Here is the list of topics featured on the back cover:

  • How to address family issues such as unhealed sibling rivalries, parental favoritism, greed and secrecy
  • How to navigate all the necessary legal documents such as wills and powers of attorney
  • How to promote forgiveness in your family and in your own heart
  • How to speak truth in love to parents, siblings, and children
  • How to let go and heal any family rifts.

Love’s Way can be purchased at The Potter’s House, from Hendrickson Publishers, or ordered from other commercial websites.

-Marjory Zoet Bankson, Seekers Church

Creating a Safe Harbor for African American LGBT Elders

In October 2011, Imani Woody completed a study called Lift Every Voice that explored the unique experiences of African American lesbian and gay male elders. The study concluded that for this segment of the LGBT community, finding inclusive and welcoming environments can be very difficult.  To read an article coauthored by Daniel Redman and Woody about how service can provide a safe harbor for African American LGBT elders, click on the following link:

Having “The Conversation”

This article by Tamara Sussman is titled “To die well, we must talk about death before the end of life.”

Research shows that as many as one third of seriously ill, hospitalized older people are receiving invasive treatments they don’t want at end-of-life, because no one has talked to them about their wishes for future care.  Sussman’s team has prepared pamphlets designed to stimulate advance health care planning conversations.  To learn more, click on the following link:

Volunteer Naps with Cats at No-Kill Shelter

Imagine if part of your volunteer work was snoozing? Well, that’s exactly the case for one cat-loving seventy-five-year-old, named Terry Lauerman, who attends his local cat sanctuary every day and naps with the cats.

The Safe Haven Pet Sanctuary takes in disabled cats that would otherwise be at risk of euthanasia in other facilities and gives them, well, a safe haven. But the shelter’s unique volunteer has been making waves with his snoozy charitable act.


For more information, click on the following link:

Low-vision resources: DC Council of the Blind

The District of Columbia Council of the Blind (DCCB) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, membership in which is open to blind, visually impaired and sighted individuals.  It advocates for full independence and equality of opportunity for all blind and visually impaired residents of the nation’s capital and surrounding metropolitan areas.  To accomplish this, it investigates both governmental and private services that may benefit its clientele.  In addition, it seeks to sponsor cultural, educational and athletic activities of interest to its members and to inform the public about sight loss.  Its members also provide mutual encouragement and support through social interaction.

To visit the website, click on the following link:

Playgrounds for elders


Companies like KaBOOM! and Must Have Play are working to make a new type of playground available to the nation’s older population. The parks feature low-impact exercise equipment such as elliptical machines, stationary bikes,  and hand-eye dexterity games. The activities are meant to improve balance and flexibility.  To learn more, click on the following link:

Noteworthy Sculptures at Rock Creek Cemetery


Rock Creek Cemetery’s park-like setting is graced with beautiful sculptures, mausoleums, monuments, and markers, many of which are the works of famous artisans and landscape architects.

Among the most visited is the evocative, cloaked bronze sculpture crafted by Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Stanford White for Marian Hooper, “Clover” Adams and her husband, Henry Adams. Although the sculpture is known colloquially as Grief, its true name is The Mystery of the Hereafter and the Peace of God that Passeth Understanding.

Also of note are the Hitt, Hardon, Kauffman, Keep and Thompon-Harding monuments, and the Heurich and Sherwood mausoleums.


  • Gutzon Borglum, Rabboni-Ffoulke Memorial, 1909
  • James Earle Fraser, Frederick Keep Monument, 1920
  • Lauran Gardin Fraser, Hitt Memorial, 1931
  • William Ordway Partridge, Kauffman Memorial 1897 (also known as Seven Ages and Memory)
  • Brenda Putnam, Simon Memorial, 1917
  • Vinnie ReamEdwin B. Hay Monument, 1906
  • Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Adams Memorial, 1890
  • Mary Washburn, Waite Memorial, 1908
  • Adolph Alexander Weinman, Spencer Memorial, 1919

Five Ways to Serve Elderly Church Members

5 Ways to Serve Elderly Church Members

This article discusses 5 ways of keeping older church members with diminished capacities involved and active.  They are:

  1. Provide avenues of connection for elderly church members.
  2. Livestream events and happenings at your church
  3. Create unique service opportunities.
  4. Include elderly church members in outreach.
  5. Create ministries to reach out and meet elders’ needs.

To read the article, click on the following link: