How will you celebrate World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly?

This Sunday 23 July marks the third annual World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly. It’s an invitation to celebrate and recognise the elder members of our community.

In 2023, Pope Francis has chosen ‘His Mercy is from age to age’ (Luke 1:50) as the theme to reflect on the importance of connection between generations.

This year, we are encouraging communities right across the Diocese, whether it’s Parishes or schools, to celebrate the day and think about how we can engage with the elderly in meaningful ways all year round.

It might be through students visiting an aged care facility or a youth mass with a focus on the day or a special memorabilia display.

Students from St Joseph’s Primary School at Kilaben Bay recently visited an aged care facility to connect with and bring some joy to the people who are living there.

They played games, chatted with the residents and learned a great life lesson – it doesn’t matter how old you are you can always have some fun and it is easy to bring joy to people’s lives by just smiling, listening, and joining in.

Meanwhile, our Murrurundi Parish is using World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly as an opportunity to launch a heritage display of items of spiritual or religious significance, as well as photos depicting some of the important aspects of Parish history, including the role of the Catholic laity, Sisters of Mercy and Priests.

“The memorabilia display helps to acknowledge both current-day elderly parishioners who have given life to the Murrurundi Parish, as well as those early pioneers and ancestors who helped build up the Catholic faith community in the district,” Parishioner Gerard Howard said.

He hopes, after seeing the display, that people will leave with “an appreciation and awareness of the contribution of grandparents and the elderly to the present-day community”.

“We recently had elderly parishioners plant a series of natural shade trees around the new seating in the cemetery,” Gerard said.

“This was a symbolic effort to acknowledge the parishioners who have been integral to parish life over many decades here in Murrurundi.

“Many early settlers and pioneers of the district practiced their faith in the Church and are buried in the cemetery.

“We are hoping to achieve the creation of spaces that are inclusive and conducive to reflection and contemplation.”

This display is part of a larger project at the Parish. With help from a small Federal Government grant, they are creating indoor and outdoor facilities that are welcoming and accessible for the elderly and others of all ages and abilities.

So, how is your community celebrating World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly? We would love to hear about it. Email to share.

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