ContemplAgeing

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Annual Conference of the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the American Society on Aging (ASA), Chicago, March 15-March 19, 2010

Last week NCOA-ASA’s Annual Conference, Aging in America, was held, and a variety of presentations and workshops were offered.  My interest gravitated to the presentations designated under the category of Religion and Spirituality.  Many of these were organized by the Forum on Religion, Spirituality and Aging (FoRSA), a special interest group of ASA, and NCOA’s National Interfaith Coalition on Aging (NICA).

 On Tuesday, March 16th I presented a workshop, “What Do Gratitude and Forgiveness have to Do with Living and Aging Well?” It was described as follows:

  George Vaillant, in his book, Aging Well: Surprising Guideposts to a Happier Life, concludes “[those] who have aged most successfully are those who worry less about cholesterol and waistlines and more about gratitude and forgiveness.”  Other researchers also note the improvement in life satisfaction that accompanies their enhancement.  This presentation will provide ways to deepen the capacity for both so that the meaning and quality of improve.

 My learning objectives were to:

  •  Develop a clear sense of the meaning of gratitude and forgiveness
  • Consider and appreciate what the research says about the impact of gratitude and forgiveness on the quality of life
  • Propose exercises that enhance the development of the capacity for both gratitude and forgiveness

The handout for my workshop is available by clicking the “Publications” Tab on the menu bar above, then clicking on Workshop Handout posted Friday, March 26, 2010.

 On Thursday, March 18th, FoRSA celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a series of presentations that included:

  • The Future of Religion and Spirituality as Seen by Professional Gerontologists
  • Hope: An Essential Component for a Full Life
  • How Spirituality and Religion Inform an Aging America: Past, Present and Future
  • Meeting the Spiritual and Religious Needs of Ethnic Minority Elders

Presenters included:

  •  James W. Ellor, PhD, DMin, LCSW, Professor, Department of Social Work, Baylor University
  • Susan H. McFadden, PhD, Professor of Psychology, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh
  • James Oberle, PhD, Director of Spiritual Formation, Holy Trinity Seminary
  • Donald Koepke, MDiv, Director Emeritus, CLH Center for Spirituality and Aging
  • Stephen Sapp, MDiv, PhD, Professor and Chair of Religious Studies, University of Miami
  • Marty Richards, MSW, Social Worker, Richards & Richards
  • Marita Grudzen, Associate Director, Stanford Geriatric Education Center, Stanford University
  • Sharon Latson, Senior Director of Access Initiatives, Vitas Innovative Hospice Care
  • Ronald Nakasone, PhD, MHA, Professor in Residence (Buddhist Studies), Graduate Theological Union
Posted in agingForgivenessGratitude on 25 March 2010
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