I saw the headline and I couldn’t believe what I was reading. The article popped up in my blog reading app, Feedly. The app pulls articles from blogs I follow such as blogs written by fellow preachers, Christian ministries, congregations, religious news sites and a few blogs focusing in on my favorite sports team.
The article I am referring to was about a church telling older members to stay away from the worship services. Probably 70% of the blogs appearing on Feedly are never read by me because I don’t have the time, but I had to read this one. The article described a denominational church that had decided to shut down for a few weeks and then reboot itself (I immediately thought of Hollywood rebooting old movies into new ones). In the course of planning their first ‘NEW’ Sunday as a church, the church leaders had mailed a letter to all their older members asking them not to show up for at least a year. The letter explained that they would now only try to attract young families and having old people sitting in the pews would be a distraction.
While I personally have experienced the age discrimination issue (on April 1, 2017 I was asked to resign and the only reason for this request was my age, no other reason was ever given to me or to the congregation – by the way, that same congregation has now dismissed 6 ministers in about 3 years and 9 ministers in about 11 years and are currently down to only fill in ministers), I was shocked to see age discrimination being practiced against members of a church, even if it was a denominational church.
Are older members a distraction? NO! I am happy to know that something like this would never happen in the Lord’s church here in Hot Springs. We value each and every member, whether they are 21 or 81 years old. Each person is loved, and each person is treasured!