Pastors and old people singing at church service.

The elderly

The retired often have time to help others. They can volunteer in various ways: they can, for example, act as support partners, companions and confidants to other elderly people. Many parishes have plenty to do and a lot of people in need, so volunteers are welcomed with open arms, whether on a temporary or long-term basis.

Some parishes run regular groups in different languages: for example, Lappeenranta, Lahti and Turku offer activities for non-Finnish speakers, and Helsinki, Kokkola and Salo have groups for Russian speakers. For more information, contact your local parish.

In addition to the local weekly services, parishes offer regular concerts and prayer meetings. Alpha courses, which focus on the basics of Christianity, are offered throughout the country, and many parishes also run Bible study groups. Moreover, you’ll find religious programmes on television and radio and devotional resources online.

Parishes offer discussion groups and presentations on a variety of topics for recent pensioners to help ease the transition to retired life. Day groups for the elderly meet for about two hours at a time to drink tea or coffee, chat and listen to guest speakers. Some parishes also offer fitness groups for senior citizens.

As always, contact your parish office to find out what’s going on in your area.