Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Pilgrimage Into the Last Third of Life by Jane Thibault and Richard Morgan

We baby boomers are entering the last third of our life. Our life is changing. Our circumstances are changing.
Thibault and Morgan believe that experiencing the last third of life, whether hale or frail, will gain meaning and joy when experienced in relation to God. They have written short meditations on some of the best ways they have found to know, love, serve, and enjoy God and one another in the last third of life.
They use the term “pilgrimage” to indicate a life of meaningful intent and spiritual intensity. The latter part of life can be an intentional move toward God.
They cover seven topics, or “gates.” I am going to list just a few of the meditations from each of the seven topics.
Facing Aging and Dying: dealing with life no longer filled with accomplishments, changing interests, contemplating death.
Living with Limitations: dealing with balance or vision or hearing loss, downsizing possessions.
Doing Inner Work: willingness to forgive, gratitude, wearing masks.
Living In and Out of Community: dealing with fewer friends, moving, needing care.
Prayer and Contemplation: Lectio Divina, living with uncertainty, writing a letter to God.
Redeeming Loss and Suffering: reinterpreting suffering as an invitation to draw closer to God, lessons from Gethsemane.
Leaving a Legacy: how you want to be remembered.

I found this to be a valuable little book. The thoughts are short and work perfectly to read one a day. The authors have provided good reflection questions at the end of each meditation. This book would make a great choice for a reading group or Sunday School class consisting of older people.
This book has given me much to think about, now that I have entered into that classification of “retired.”

Jane Marie Thibault (age 65) is a retired gerontologist and professor of Family and Geriatric Medicine at the University of Louisville School of Medicine. She is the author of several books and lives in Louisville, Kentucky.
Richard L. Morgan (age 85) is a retired Presbyterian (USA) pastor. He is a volunteer in pastoral care and chapel director at the Redstone Highlands retirement community near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is the author or coauthor of several books.

Upper Room, 144 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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