From the Worldwide Faith News archives

Jack & Sharon Rogers speak on 'graying' U.S.

Date 18 Jun 2002 15:54:33 -0400

Note #7261 from PCUSA NEWS to PRESBYNEWS:


Jack & Sharon Rogers speak on 'graying' U.S.

by Nancy Rodman

COLUMBUS,OH - The Rev. Jack Rogers addressed a breakfast audience on June 18, telling a gathering of senior Presbyterians, "We can get older - and we can get smarter."

Rogers, the moderator of the 213th General Assembly, said during the Older Adult Ministries breakfast that the Presbyterian Church (USA) is made up mostly of smaller churches, which he defined as those with average worship attendance of fewer than 100 and/or those with annual budgets of less than $100,00 - and most members of such congregations are older.  

"We are a graying church," he said.  

Rogers said he has seen many successful small churches operated in creative ways, many depending heavily on lay leaders, including commissioned lay pastors, who are older, and are retired. He spoke admiringly of these leaders' willingness to take responsibility for what is increasingly their church.

Rogers' wife, Sharon, quoting the African proverb that holds that it takes a village to raise a child, said she thinks it also "takes a village to grow older." She told her listeners about her 94-year-old mother, and the care she receives from her neighbors.

"It is important for (people of ) all ages to commit to what life is about," she said.
Jack Rogers cited Census figures showing that by 2050 there will be no ethnic majority in the United States. "We must face this and grow and broaden by being genuinely diverse, where our commonality is our commitment to Jesus Christ, " he said.

He concluded by quoting a slogan he saw at a steel plant in Korea, which he said is appropriate for older people: "Resources are limited, but creativity is unlimited."
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