10:00 am — 1:00 pm
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Course 1 (Online version offered in two parts on April 10 and 17, 2021; Debriefing session May 1, 2021)

Biblical Foundations of Ministries with the Aging (April 10, 2021); Demographic Realities of Ministries with the Aging…with a Missional Action Plan (April 17, 2021)


Opportunities to serve with the aging already abound, including the elderly living in our own neighbourhoods and throughout our communities.  The vast majority (90+%) live in their own homes or with their own families; 2/3 of those over 85 live in their own homes or with their families.  85% of those with dementia live in the communities (not in institutions).  Further, loneliness in Canadian seniors is widely recognized as “an epidemic”: “1.4 million elderly Canadians report feeling lonely”, “while 80 years and older say that up to 80 per cent of the time they feel lonely” (here).  How, though, shall we go about understanding aging, our own as well as “ministries with the aging”*?  This course begins our considerations for orienting both our understanding and our practices with attention to biblical foundations.  We will look at a biblical view of the elderly & aging (especially the privileges promised as well as the special challenges), the biblical opportunities & responsibilities of the elderly, the church’s responsibility toward the elderly, as well as pastoral & ministry applications including an examination of the motives and privileges for ministries with the aging.  In addition to our consideration of biblical foundations both in class and via the readings, each student will begin a practical exploration of the opportunities in your church and community.

*(Notice we say “with”, not “for”; we are in this together.)

“The righteous … flourish in the courts of our God.
They still bear fruit in old age;
they are ever full of sap and green,
to declare that the LORD is upright”
(Psalm 92).


Dr. Tom McCormick and Rev. Matthew VanLuik

This course is the first course out of 7 courses with the option to obtain a Certificate in MINISTRY TO THE AGING

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the course will be offered in 2 (two) online sessions on April 10 and 17, 2021; the debriefing session will be held on May 1, 2021


Conference attendance – There will be a $50 fee for those who ONLY attend the conference

Audit – There will be a $100 fee for auditing the module.
Certificate Level – There will be a $150 fee for each module 0r $750 if preregistered for the entire program ($650 for chaplains)
Bachelors/Masters Level – Please contact the Word and Spirit Institute for tuition of Bachelor and Masters courses.
There will an additional cost for the purchase of required reading material.


  • Biblical Foundations of Ministries with the Aging
  • Principles and Practices of Spiritual Care for Seniors (I)
  • Aging, Stages of Human Development, and Spirituality
  • Principles and Practices of Spiritual Care for Seniors (II)
  • Reaching out: Institutional settings; Families and Caregivers for Seniors
  • Reaching out: The Church and the Community; Families and Caregivers for Seniors
  • Cultural, Gender, and Religious Diversity; Global Aging

Please e-mail wsinstitute@outlook.com to register and/or receive the Course-syllabus




April 10, 2021
10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Event Category:
Dr. Tom McCormick

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