With more than 6 million people in the United States living with Alzheimer's disease and more than 11 million Americans providing unpaid care for people with Alzheimer's or other dementias, addressing the concerns of these elders and their caregivers is a matter of increasing importance. Relying on their many years of experience in this area, gerontologist Jane Marie Thibault and Richard L. Morgan offer this book to provide a fresh, hopeful model of dealing with Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia.
Caregivers have two basic needs: affirmation that their caregiving is not in vain and reassurance that the lives of those for whom they care are not without purpose. Care receivers need more than medical attention—they need tender care, involvement in the community, and a sense of connection with a loving God. When care receivers and caregivers are able to view their relationship as a mutual spiritual path, each plays a role in deepening the spiritual life of the other.
Addressing topics such as communicating with and providing meaningful worship experiences for loved ones suffering from memory loss, Thibault and Morgan offer creative approaches to ensure care for both elders and caregivers. They also recommend ways churches can minister more effectively in this arena.
In addition to being an excellent resource for individuals caring for loved ones, No Act of Love Is Ever Wasted is a helpful resource for counselors, support group leaders, pastors, and other professionals. Besides offering practical ways to help, this book serves as a reminder that every act of love brings positive transformation to the recipient, the giver, and the world.
Jane Marie Thibault, a retired gerontologist and professor of Family and Geriatric Medicine at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, lives in Louisville, Kentucky. She is the author of 10 Gospel Promises for Later Life and A Deepening Love Affair: The Gift of God in Later Life. Thibault is coauthor (with Richard Morgan) of No Act of Love Is Ever Wasted: The Spirituality of Caring for Persons with Dementia.
Richard L. Morgan is a retired chaplain, pastor (PCUSA), and professor. He most recently served as a volunteer chaplain at Redstone Highlands, the senior living community where he resided near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He holds a bachelor of arts degree from Davidson College; a master of divinity, master of theology, and PhD from Union Theological Seminary; and a master of counseling from Wake Forest University, Richard was named the 1987 Man of the Year by the city of Lenoir, NC; awarded the 2013 Presbyterian Older Adult Ministry Award; and honored as the 2015 Volunteer of the Year at Redstone Highlands Senior Living Community.