On my desk is a small, unframed piece of paper. While the edges are frayed and the once-white paper is yellowing, it provides an important focus for living my days. It reminds me of who I am and what I hope to become.

Sooner or later, everyone endures bereavement — the experience of the death of a loved one. Our emotional response to bereavement is grief, a personal experience whose duration and depth can vary from individual to individual. Some people recover quickly from a loss and move on. Other people grieve intensely for a short period before finding peace while other individuals feel profound grief for years.

As a child, I had freckles on my nose and cheeks. My body was not covered in freckles like some of my childhood friends, but I didn’t like that I had freckles anywhere on my body. My distain for my freckles was well known to my family.

While retirement has changes and challenges, it also provides opportunities to embark on new adventures. ENCORE Ministry Director Rev. Dr. Richard Gentzler provides an inspiring and alternative view of retirement.

Elder abuse affects older people across all socioeconomic groups, cultures, and races and can occur when they are disconnected from social supports. While older adults may experience the same crimes as other age groups — including financial, physical, sexual, or emotional abuse and neglect — they are less likely to report the crime and recover from their victimization.

When I was a child, I used to imagine what it would be like to be as old as my great-grandfather, Sterling Grim. My great-grandfather was a Pennsylvania Dutchman and an active member of the Church of the United Brethren in Christ. He sometimes spoke in German or Pennsylvania Dutch and tried teaching me the language. I had enough difficulty with the English language and could never quite grasp his German tongue. For some reason, his thick white hair and wrinkled face never frightened me. In fact, I was attracted to my great-grandfather because I felt special by his love.

Caregiving can be both an opportunity and a burden. It’s often a long journey with no end in sight. Few people face more daily challenges or overcome more obstacles than caregivers. During the COVID pandemic, the challenges of caregiving have been exacerbated for many who receive care and those who provide it.

The legendary late great pitcher Satchel Paige is credited with asking, “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?” In your own mind, what age are you? Be honest. If you’re like me, your answer depends on the time of day and how you’re feeling at that particular moment! Our traditional idea of aging is …

Being a leader in any area of ministry today is a daunting task. Rapid change and uncertainty are constantly before us. While COVID-19 brought challenges to the forefront, ministry struggles have been with us through the ages.

During times like these, it’s helpful to remember the primary mission of the local church as stated in The Book of Discipline: “The mission of the Church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ.”