Author(s): MACKINLAY ELIZABETH
This sensitive and compassionate book provides older people who are nearing the end of life and their loved ones, as well as the professionals who work with them, with a greater depth of understanding of spiritual issues surrounding death and dying. Illustrated with the experiences of many older people, it explores important themes such as grief and loss; fear; pain, distress and suffering; acceptance; transcendence; prayer; the healing of relationships; and intimacy, and shows that the final journey towards death can be one of the most spiritually meaningful times in the life of an older person - a time in which there is still hope, and in which the person who is dying and their loved ones can grow spiritually, strengthened by the difficult times they face together. Spiritual issues for older people with dementia who are nearing the end of life are also explored, as are ethical and moral issues in death and dying, and the ways in which bereaved partners and relatives may come to terms with the loss of a loved one. This concise and accessible book will be a valuable resource for those in the caring professions and a rich source of guidance and support for older people who are nearing the end of life and their families.
Elizabeth MacKinlay is a registered nurse and an Anglican priest. She is Director of the Centre for Ageing and Pastoral Studies at St Mark's National Theological Centre, Canberra, Australia, and a Professor in the School of Theology at Charles Sturt University, Australia. She was Chair of the ACT Ministerial Advisory Council on Ageing 2002-2008 and was the ACT Senior Australian of the Year for 2009. Elizabeth is the editor of Ageing and Spirituality across Faiths and Cultures and Ageing, Disability and Spirituality and the author of Spiritual Growth and Care in the Fourth Age of Life and The Spiritual Dimension of Ageing, all published by JKP.
Preface.; Introduction: About growing older, dying and death.; 1. Grief and loss: A part of life.; 2. Fear of dying.; 3. The final life career: Is this only a time of waiting for death? Or is there something more?; 4. Acceptance that death will come.; 5. Pain, distress and suffering.; 6. Prayer.; 7. Responding to meaning: symbol and ritual.; 8. Transcendence in the process of death and dying.; 9. Healing of relationships.; 10. Intimacy and dying.; 11. Dementia and dying.; 12. Ethical and moral issues in death and dying.; 13. The final days and hours of the journey.; 14. Learning to live without my partner.; Further reading.; Appendices.; Index.