Guests Elisa Bosley and Christine Thelker discuss spiritual care for people living with dementia. Elisa speaks from the voice of a chaplain’s relationship with those living with dementia and Christine from a first-person voice regarding her own spirituality and supporting others living with dementia.
The conversation focuses on how spirituality is part of every human being. It goes beyond a particular faith expression (religion) to a sense of joy, hope, comfort, assurance, safety. Unfortunately, spiritual care is often overlooked for people with dementia who live in long-term care communities, sometimes due to a lack of knowledge, time, budget, or comfort level. Both Elisa and Christine reflect on the fact that with the right resources and training, providing engaging, interactive spiritual care for people with dementia is possible for anyone.
Christine Thelker, author of "For this I am Grateful" https://www.austinmacauley.com/us/book/i-am-grateful was diagnosed at age 56 with Vascular Dementia and Cerebrovascular Disease. As a former health worker in Dementia Care and End of life care, she advocated for families and for better training for health care workers. Christine is an advocate with Dementia Alliance International https://www.dementiaallianceinternational.org and writes a blog https://chrissysjourney.com/ and has presented at national and international conferences.
Elisa Bosley, Christian chaplain from Boulder Colorado is the founder of https://spiritualeldercare.com/ a free resource of original worship service agendas, Bible discussion guides, sing-along classic hymns, and more, all designed to meet the spiritual needs of older adults with Alzheimer’s and other dementias..
Dementia-Friendly Worship: A Multifaith Handbook for Chaplains, Clergy and Faith Communities