Caring for Parents - November 2020

Caring for Parents - November 2020

Dear Caregivers~

I just finished reading Jann Arden’s memoir Feeding My Mother: Comfort and Laughter in the Kitchen as My Mom Lives with Memory Loss in which she shares part of her journey into caregiving for both of her parents, who happen to live across the street. Through journal entries, photographs, and recipes, Jann reflects with beauty and honesty on the hardships, joys, and occasional goofy antics of caring for a loved one with dementia. I highly recommend the book to those of you who like to read. (Boyne Library has a copy.)

As she is waiting in an airport to get home to her dying father, Jann writes the following:

“Every … time I go away that father of mine gets himself hauled off to a hospital. Perhaps he likes having me frantically trying to get home to him. Still, looking after Mom and Dad for these past five or six years is the best thing I’ve ever done. The lessons learned have been too many to count, and the value beyond priceless. Caring for people makes you better. Period.” (August 31, 2015)

Caring for people makes you better. Whether that is the reason we enter into caregiving or is simply the by-product of responding to needs of our parents (or others), it is a truth. It is also our calling as people of God and an essential part of being human. Another book I read earlier this year spoke of God as a “ministering God.” When we minister to others, when we care for others, we are joining in God’s work of making it on earth as it is in heaven.

Caregivers, the hard work you do is holy work. And in these pandemic days when that work is made harder and more isolating, 

may the strength of God give you endurance, 
may the grace of Jesus fill you and flow through you, 
and may the fellowship of the Holy Spirit sustain you.

In Christ’s peace,
Pastor Rachel