Spirituality & Aging
This program area promotes research and education in the field of spirituality that will benefit the lives of current and incoming residents and staff in retirement and long-term care. The goal is to provide spiritual care programs that will support the diverse needs of the growing aging population.
- Providing education to professionals and the general public about various elements of spiritual care for seniors.
- Identifying and implementing spiritual practices that may assist in older adults’ transition into continuing care facilities.
- Compiling a user-friendly, multi-faith manual of spiritual practices, prayers, sacred texts and rituals.
- Delivering seminars for professionals and the general public to educate about "Spiritual Care for Seniors“.
- Exploring the relationship between belonging to a group and how it may affect health.
- Understanding the impact of “forgiveness” on psychological (e.g. stress, anger, etc.) and physical (e.g. medication usage, blood pressure, etc.) health.
- Using the labyrinth to enhance spiritual care programs in retirement and long-term care.
- Investigating the role of reminiscence on overall health and well-being.
- Exploring the use of music in spiritual care for older adults.
- Understand how older adults experience their spirituality when transitioning to retirement or long-term care.
Click [HERE] to see a list of current and completed research projects.
Marianne Mellinger, DMin (Conrad Grebel University College)
Catherine Haslam, PhD (Associate Professor, University of Exeter, England)
Renate Ysseldyk, PhD (CIFAR Junior Fellow, University of Exeter)
There is no one accepted definition of "spirituality", but typically most definitions include the following characteristics:
Spirituality: That which lies at the core of each person's being, that is concerned with ultimate meaning and purpose and that is expressed through values, hopefulness, vocation, and relationship with oneself, others, the natural world and the transcendent. It may or may not include religious practices. The word "spirituality" came into common usage in the 1960s. People born before 1935 may experience "spirituality" as a foreign concept, for some it may even have negative connotations. This group is more likely to be sustained by familiar religious practices (Henry Simmons, Ph.D.)