written by Rose Achey
As a young person, I never really thought about what old age meant. Sure, I knew it meant slowing down, forgetting things, using a walker, wearing glasses and a hearing aide, but these things merely describe old age and some encompass what it means.
I had a graying professor who always said that old age has a force behind it, a pressure. Working with the Little Sisters has proved this to me. Looking out across Villa Guadalupe’s dining room I can see men and women who have fought our country’s wars, taught its children, nursed its sick and farmed its land, but now they need help pouring their coffee, getting into their chairs and cutting their meat. They once heard Jesus’ call to “feed his sheep,” and now they are the ones to be fed.
This role reversal illuminates a new perspective for me. In all of my rosaries I ask for the grace to be able to serve, but never did I recognize the grace that it is to be served, to live a life full of need. This is a side of Jesus’ commandments that the elderly poor live out.
Through their presence we may encounter God, and that is a privilege. The elderly poor play a crucial part in the coming of the kingdom of God and we cannot forget that.