Celebrating the National Day of Elderly in Indonesia, discovering a true treasure of life

In celebrating National Elderly Day with the theme “Healthy Elderly, Strong Indonesia", in several cities, the Community of Sant'Egidio held a series of activities.

In Jakarta, several elderly residents of the Santa Anna Orphanage were invited to have dinner together at a restaurant in the Ancol Beach area, Jakarta. The event, which was enlivened by games, singing, took place with great joy.

Meanwhile, during the Peace School service, the children received an explanation about the importance of the existence of the elderly and then some children were invited to visit the elderly who live in their neighborhood. On the way there, we met an old woman begging on the street. Poor him.... But then the kids can learn something from this meeting.

In Medan, friends celebrated by visiting elderly priests, including Bishop Emeritus, Mgr. Pius Datubara, OFM Cap. Then visited the elderly at the Elderly Home “Karya Kasih”. Before that day, the manager of the orphanage did not allow them to enter, because there were still 2 elderly people recovering from covid19. But as always, there are miracles. When friends arrived, they were even allowed to enter even though they only met a few elderly people. The elderly there received mugs as gifts and all were delighted to receive this special gift.

In Padang, Mgr. Vitus Rubianto Solichin, SX joined the party at the Elderly Home "Wisma Cinta Kasih”. The elderly really enjoyed this precious moment, especially when they could share stories with each other, as well as sing and dance together.

In Kupang the celebration of the National Elderly Day began with a Eucharistic Liturgy with the elderly at the Elderly Home "Budi Agung", followed by various games and lunch together.

In Yogyakarta, the Community of Sant'Egidio, returned to visit “Domus Pacis”, Elderly Home for senior priests, for the first time after closed to the public for 2 year pandemic. A touching message from a priest there: "Let's pray that the war in Ukraine will end soon."

This commemoration moment is a great joy for all of us, because it coincides with the theme of the World Day of Social Communications given by the Holy Father "Listening with the Ears of the Heart". We are starting to see closed doors starting to open for a dialogue with the elderly. This commemoration celebration is a real work of solidarity and efforts to build an inclusive society towards the existence of the elderly in various places in Indonesia. On this occasion also young people can learn from the life experiences of the elderly who are so rich, and above all, this celebration is the fulfillment of the rights of the elderly to get attention, care and to be heard.