Program Description: Currently one-fifth of the American Jewish community is over 65, with the fastest growth component being those over 75. They represent the longest-living, healthiest, most educated, mobile, and spiritually-engaged generation of older adults that has ever lived. Just on the horizon, joining them within the decade, are the first wave of the "baby boom" generation. The "new Jewish majority" will change our congregations and Jewish life in dynamic ways. How shall we respond to this "longevity revolution"?
To anticipate these new realities and effectively respond to them, the Union's Department of Jewish Family Concerns has created its program on Sacred Aging. A six part congregation-based program, Sacred Aging looks at the impact of the changing demographics of our community and seeks to enlist congregations in developing and implementing meaningful and creative programs and services for our membership, as well as providing resources for clergy and lay leadership.
Sacred Aging Program Highlights Sacred Aging will include six components, each with corresponding programs and support materials designed to meet the needs of an aging population. The components and the needs that are addressed include:
Responding to the longevity revolution: A guide for congregational leadership
The congregation as a caring community: Providing support for caregivers
Creating new rituals for our extended lifespan
Helping members make sacred decisions: The impact of medical technology
Life as a sacred journey: Legacy programs that celebrate the "spiritual capital" of older adults
Seeking meaning and purpose in life's third stage: Developing educational models that relate to the revolution in longevity.