Dementia patient’s daughter publishes Christian colouring book to keep the elderly on track with God
by Gracia Lee // September 23, 2022, 12:37 pm
"These seniors may not be able to hold on to God because of their illness, but in the book of Isaiah, God says that He will never ever abandon us," said Jenny Ng, who is gifting her book to seniors for free in hopes of helping them strengthen their faith. Photos by Salt&Light.
Jenny Ng’s mother was 83 years old when she started showing signs of mild dementia, from being unable to recall recent events to slowing down in her communication.
A Christian since she was 40, she also gradually forgot how to pray and lost interest in reading the Bible.
“I was heartbroken,” said Jenny, adding that her mother used to be a faithful believer who would attend worship services every week without fail.
So, when Jenny noticed that her mother had a keen interest in colouring, an idea sprang into her mind.
She began printing out pictures from biblical stories for the older woman to colour. These activity sheets were accompanied by simple Bible verses for her to read as she coloured.
“I realised that she was very happy with her completed work and often took it out proudly for others to see and appreciate,” Jenny told Salt&Light in Mandarin.
Inspired by this observation, Jenny set out to publish a picture book with Scripture for the elderly with dementia, as she found that there were few such books in the market.
A treasure for the elderly
That was how the set of Mandarin books, 乐龄之宝 , which means “A Treasure for the Elderly”, came to be published in July this year.
A part of the set includes a picture book that features Bible truths, like creation, in colourful and interactive images, as well as short and simple prayers to help guide these seniors’ prayer lives.
Jenny recommends accompanying a senior as he or she goes through it. “When reading the book, you can encourage the elderly to read it aloud.
“If they find that too difficult, you can read it aloud for them or encourage them to read the words together with you.
“As you discuss the book’s content, you can also remind them that Jesus is our Saviour. Point out how God continues to bless and guide them in their old age, and allow them to pause and ponder on parts of the book that interest them,” she said.
Also included is a colouring book that features more Gospel truths, like Jesus’ seven “I am” statements, and short prayers, along with a set of colour pencils.
“When they are done colouring a picture, affirm their work and encourage them to re-read the book frequently,” said Jenny. “Never stop reminding them of the goodness of God, as well as to be thankful for His wonderful creation.”
Connected to God
She believes that seniors with dementia still have the ability to have a relationship with God, even if they have lost certain aspects of their cognitive ability and memory.
“These seniors may not be able to hold on to God because of their illness, but in the book of Isaiah, God says that He will never ever abandon us,” said Jenny, who is gifting her book to seniors for free in hopes of helping them strengthen their faith.
“As they go through this illness, God will hold on to their hand, guide and protect them for the rest of their lives.”
Those interested to get a free copy of 乐龄之宝 may drop Jenny an email at [email protected].
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