- To help congregations strengthen their ministry with and for older adults; and
- To encourage older adults to affirm their gifts and use those gifts in service to family, church, community and the world.
WHY is ALOA so passionate about ministry with and for older adults?
Scriptural mandate – ALOA reminds the church of God’s view of older adults.
- God loves elders – Isaiah 46:4, Isaiah 40:31, Ruth 4:15 & Psalm 90:12
- God values old age – Psalm 91:16, Proverbs 16:31 & Psalm 71:18-19
- People of all ages have significance in the body of Christ – Leviticus 19:32, Genesis 12:1-4 & Luke 2:25-38
- Older people have many gifts to share – Job 12:12, Job 32:7 & Proverbs 20:29
- Old age is a gift of God – Psalm 92:12-14 & Proverbs 17:6
→ Opportunity: Each congregation can publicly affirm the high calling and purpose of this stage of discipleship and celebrate the various milestones contained within it.
Demographic Realities – ALOA endorses a transformation of thought, actions and strategies about older adults that mirrors the world today.
- A total of 10,000 adults turn 65 each day. This pattern is expected to continue for the next twenty years.
- The population paradigm has already shifted from a pillar to a pyramid, reflecting the “Age Wave.”
- Most congregations cling to the outdated assumption that youth ministry is the key to church growth, instead of aligning with the growing number of older adults. Around just about any congregation in the country, there are as many 60 year olds as there are 6 year olds.
- Older adults already comprise a large proportion of our existing congregations.
- The older adult population offers significant, yet untapped outreach potential.
→ Opportunity: Each congregation can prioritize ministry by, with and for older adults.
Maximizing the potential – ALOA advocates for older adults as a significant resource to the church and community.
- Sharing personal faith history is a vehicle to communicate wisdom and core Christian beliefs across generations.
- The call to discipleship reflects a lifelong journey.
- Intergenerational experiences offer contact across multiple age segments.
- Older adults face unique challenges and situations that require targeted advocacy, encouragement and action.
- Because the older adult population is as diverse as any age segment, multi-dimensional strategies most effectively meet the varying and sometimes overlapping individual needs.
→ Opportunity: ALOA can assume national thought leadership among organizations serving the older adult faith community and beyond.