Friday, February 19, 2010

Treasuring the Elderly

Here's my new book baby launched this week - a mystery thriller that includes murder, kidnapping, two love stories and a message about protecting the elderly among us.

I’m not sure how my love affair with older people began. Perhaps it was having interesting grandparents. Maybe it was my wonderful carpenters in their 80’s whose workmanship more than compensated for the fact that their work pace was slower.

I do know it was sharpened by the word of God which reminds us to respect the living treasures of wisdom we have among us. Leviticus 19:32 "Rise in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the LORD."

In a church I visited last week while vacationing in St. Petersburg, FL, I encountered Ann – 88 years young sitting next to me in her spiffy pill box hat dressed to the nines. Of course, I had to chat with her afterwards. Angel Ann I immediately nicknamed her in my mind– what a sweet face, joy spilled from her eyes as she shared how she washes and irons the church altar linens every week and has performed this service in various parishes for sixty-two years.

After we exchanged names Ann promised to write me a letter if I gave her my address, because writing letters was something she liked to do, but “Sit down when you read it, because I write long letters.” I told her about my current writing and she promised to pray for me every day, promptly adding my name to the list she carried in her purse on a big card. Getting a quick glance at the paper, I estimated about fifty names already on it.

Ann reminded me of Kathryn in my new novel, Directive 99, a resident of a futuristic government run life centre for the elderly. Here greedy officials introduce a plan to euthanize them in incrementally lower ages because the economy no longer can handle the burden of their expense. My Kathryn, vibrant and alert, performed her part-time work as an antique jewelry appraiser and was a beloved family member to her nieces and nephews, but she would be among the first to die.

I’ve studied current population data and prevalent myths (I’ll present them in depth in the future), but beware of false dogma. What God creates he provides for (unless the greed of man snatches it away.) We need not destroy the elderly to advance our personal lifestyle. The time is coming when euthanasia very well may be presented as a viable choice. It’s not - not ever.

If you like suspense, a love story, and a fast-paced novel with a moral message, I encourage you to get your hands on Directive 99, available through Amazon or Barnes and Noble stores or my website: