To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings, who also will share in the glory to be revealed: be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.
(1 Peter 5:1-4)
We honor older adults at Christ Church as our leaders, mentors and friends, and essential partners in our Strong Families initiative. We encourage older adults to participate in Strong Families programs as attendees, helpers or leaders, just as they serve in all ministries of the church. Perhaps more importantly, we are asking that older adults embark on a specific ministry of personal prayer and intentional relationship on behalf of families, and to consider serving as a family mentor.
Ministry of prayer & relationship: The Godly wisdom of an older adult is invaluable to those who are younger in years and in faith. We ask our older adults and elders pray for, and form intentional relationship with, younger families and individuals, following the leading of the Lord. In this prayerful, intentional relationship, the older adult can offer encouragement, friendship, love, and wisdom, and find powerful purpose in the process. A caring, elder friend in faith can change the life of a hard-working husband or wife, share wisdom with a struggling parent, or help an overwhelmed single parent, as well as offer stability and hope to younger adults, teenagers, or children. In a sense, we ask that all our elders serve as mentors to the rest of us, showing us the way of Christ through caring evangelism and loving discipleship.
Family mentor: This ministry of personal prayer and intentional relationship may lend itself to serving as a family mentor. This means simply being available to a parent or couple who ask for prayer or encouragement. As the mentor relationship develops, the mentor shares hope and wisdom. Mentor relationships are being offered through Strong Families ministries.