Released 29 April 2013
Bethlehem Senior Citizen's Program
Major Jean Dlugose, senior program director at The Salvation Army Bethlehem Corps Community Center, met Alfred Kane at an information table she set up outside the center's polling booth to encourage seniors in the neighborhood to join the group.
"Out of all the individuals I met that day, Alfred was the one that I thought was the least interested and would never show up," commented Major Dlugose.
Alfred thought so too.
"I didn't know if I wanted to do it, but I decided to give it a try and I've been to virtually every meeting since," said Alfred.
That was six years ago.
"It's a wonderful program for seniors and a remarkable effort on The Salvation Army's part," said Alfred. "I feel very fortunate to be a part of it and feel fortunate I listened to Major's suggest to attend. I look forward to going every week."
Every Thursday about 35 seniors meet together at The Salvation Army in Bethlehem. The meeting starts at 10:45 am and consists of a different activity each week, such as an informational speaker, musical performance, craft, or game, and concludes with a meal served at noon. The Salvation Army also hosts bridge games on Tuesdays and a senior drop-in time from 10 to noon on Wednesdays.
Major Dlugose plans activities based on the members' interests, and is always open to suggestions and requests. A few of the recent guests and upcoming events include the local district attorney, a presentation about the Moravian Church, Bethlehem Police K9 Team, a flea market, and men's singing group.
Alfred enjoys the weekly meetings and plans to keep attending.
"Attending makes me a happier and better person. I like to get involved. I made numerous suggestions for meetings and menus and Major Jean has followed through on those. I like going to the meeting and even just being there. Overall it has been very informative. We learn a lot and have great camaraderie."
"The program also includes weekly devotional and prayer times," says Major Dlugose. "The seniors welcome this opportunity to share. It is a true privilege to minister to and pray with them."
To learn more about The Salvation Army senior citizen's programs in your community, contact your local Salvation Army Corps Community Center.