The Mission of the Committee is to encourage and promote effective ministries by, for, and with older adults and to help people of all ages prepare for older adulthood.
The Committee on Older Adult Ministries (COAM) was created by Frances Merle Young in 1981, after she retired and moved to Maryland. She had worked for the entitlement of lay persons (especially women) in the church, while working for the national church in New York, and in multiple cities in the U.S. and around the world. She was active with the Committee until her death at 96 in 2006. Over the years, COAM has hosted multiple conferences, both regional and statewide; conducted several surveys; and has produced valuable resource materials for parishes across the state, including its newsletter, “The Gift of Aging”, and links to services and resources through its website.
After a lapse of several years, we are now reinvigorating the Committee, aiming to reconnect parishes with each other and useful resources, and to provide updated information. This seems particularly relevant with the aging of the Baby Boomers, the increase in life expectancy, ongoing issues for caregivers, and the growing interest in “encore careers” and parish programs with and for older adults.