In a world that celebrates the primacy of youth and the decline of age, World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly on July 24th dares to claim the opposite. This year the theme comes from Psalm 92:
They shall bear fruit even in old age.
Old age is not a time for people to lower the sails but to bring the learnings of long life to
a society and generations who need to hear a message of tenderness, connectedness, and resilience, the virtues that make us human.
Pope Francis, as one of the elderly, said that it is not a coincidence that war is returning
to Europe at a time when the last generation to experience it are dying out. War and
pandemics have frightened the younger generations whereas the older generations can bear witness to the light at the end of the tunnel. Darkness cannot triumph in the midst of good people. Our world needs to hear the advice of a wise generation.
People of faith define long life as a blessing, and the elderly as signs of God’s love:
“Blessed is the house where an older person lives! Blessed is the family that honours the elderly.”
This day is an opportunity to recount the blessings of the older members of our society and to encourage people of all ages to learn from and with each other.
Director of Mission