Dementia is increasingly an issue in faith communities which serve an elderly population. As the “baby boomer” generation gets into their senior years, the challenges will continue to grow. The big temptation is to simply allow persons with dementia to drop out of their worshiping communities. Yet, a congregation concerned with ministering to all of its flock will increasingly find ways to include persons with dementia into its community life.
Below are some beginning resources on dementia in the faith community. Many of these resources originate in the United Kingdom and are from a Christian perspective. In the UK, dementia is a big issue as large and once-thriving churches find themselves with increasing numbers of elderly people, many of whom eventually develop dementia. Feel free to suggest additional resources by emailing CAN.
Dementia friendly churches
This resource is from Livability in the United Kingdom. It has a nice introductory video and a downloadable resource pack.
10 tips for creating dementia friendly churches
A helpful list from Mind & Soul, based in the United Kingdom. Also includes a section on “Related ideas for leaders.”
The Dementia-Friendly Church
A helpful page of resources from Discipleship Ministries of the United Methodist Church (USA). Includes sections on “How to Get Started,” taking action, as well as a short survey tool.