6th December - People suffering from dementia

Do not cast me off in the time of old age; do not forsake me when my strength is spent.

Psalm 71:9

Past a certain age, people are seen as 'old' as if they have just arrived in this world with no personal history, no experience and as if they are of no real use to society. Add to this the confusion of dementia and some of the most experienced, courageous and formerly hardworking people in our country are marginalised and put into care homes where the doors are firmly shut. This may be for their own protection - the wide world may no longer be safe for them to wander in - but it shouldn't stop the world visiting them and including them. Many people with dementia today fought in the War, helped build our country back from its shattered, bombed state and taught the next generations as teachers, parents and grandparents. We owe them a lot - but now have little time for them. Few now are able to get to church without help and are thus unable to join in the fellowship and companionship which can expand their lives and help them to feel they are a valued part of this world; not an embarrassment.

Written by a regular churchgoer who volunteers at a care home for people with dementia

Daily prayer

Lord, help us to value our older brothers and sisters in Christ, to see them as you see them and to include them in our daily lives, acknowledging their place in our society and churches. Help us to remember that this may be a time of insecurity and fear of an unknown future. And may your your peace always be with them.


Lord, in this time of Advent open our hearts to those who feel excluded from Your church.
Help us draw in those on the margins and place them in the centre of our family.