By Nancy Curtis
If you walk past Cornerstone Christian Church in El Dorado Hills on Thursday evenings you might see happy seniors entering the building and hear some familiar songs floating through the air.
The reason? New Vision, an interdenominational Christian ministry for senior adults, is meeting for its Thursday night Bible fellowship.
Starting last September, the group was formed to meet the needs of senior adults who miss the way church used to be.
“Churches today look to reach the young because they’re the future of the church,” said Richard Jonkman, chairman of the New Vision Steering Committee. “We understand that and don’t expect churches to cater to us; however, we’re still here and need a ministry that meets our needs. Music is one of the biggest differences today; we miss the music that we loved and that ministers to our hearts.”
One of the favorite times every week in the New Vision Bible fellowship hour is when they sing their favorite praise music, often with hints of Southern gospel. The music is worshipful, lively, and meaningful as well as beautiful with its four-part harmony. They study the Bible using verse-by-verse teaching, usually doing a series of messages through an entire book of the Bible or a block of scripture, over a period of several weeks. Then there is a fun time of fellowship around coffee and light refreshments. There’s a lot of laughter and everyone seems to wear a smile on his/her face. Many people come early and stay late just to enjoy each other.
The group is reaching more and more seniors who need this kind of Christian fellowship. They have people coming from all over — Sacramento, Folsom, Cameron Park, Shingle Springs, and even as far away as Placerville, and they represent more than a dozen different churches.
“Sadly, most churches today ignore their seniors,” said Marvin Rickard, the lead teacher and one of the founders of the group. “Seniors feel left out and overlooked, so New Vision offers singing and Bible study in ways that are meaningful to us. We’re not church or a substitute for church; rather, we’re a supplement to church.”
In addition to Thursday evenings, the group enjoys social activities together. When a month has five Thursday nights they have a potluck, complete with a program for entertainment. There are day trips, lunches together after church on Sundays, attendance as a group to theater productions and concerts, day excursions, and even cruises and other trips. A New Vision group just returned from Branson, Mo.
Those who have discovered New Vision want everyone to come and enjoy the warm fellowship, the inspiration, the laughter, and the fun. Everyone in the second half of life is warmly invited and encouraged to come to New Vision on Thursday evenings from 6:30 to 7:45. They meet at Cornerstone Christian Church, 931 Lassen Lane at the intersection with El Dorado Hills Boulevard in El Dorado Hills.
Visit the website at nvministry.wordpress.com.