Fulfilled living in later life
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Q “I heard you mention ‘rementing’ in a talk you gave last year – could you explain more about this?”

‘Rementing’ is the rather ugly name for something beautiful – when the person living with dementia regains lucidity and reappears through the fog temporarily as

themselves, with capabilities they seemed to have lost. There is no medical explanation for it, but it tells us that however the disease has changed his or her behaviour, the person remains. It can happen at any time, even towards the end, when the person is in the deepest dementia.

A close friend told how she visited an indomitable elderly aunt with dementia, and was surprised when she suddenly became lucid. My friend, a very gentle soul, told her (again) about Jesus Christ, and asked if she would like to commit her life to Him. Her aunt said yes, and they prayed together. The change in her aunt was amazing, she said.

She’d always been ‘difficult’ but now she was kinder and contented, despite the dementia. My friend commented on how many people phoned to tell her about it. Recently, a colleague mentioned a 93-year-old uncle who had rejected the Gospel all his life. Now with advanced dementia and being cared for by his Christian daughter and her husband, he ‘reappeared’ one day with a clear mind. They had a lively discussion about salvation and he, too, joined the family of Christ.

There are many more stories, but we hear little about it because it doesn’t fit the standard dementia paradigm. It often occurs after spiritual input, such as singing hymns or hearing Scripture.

We know that we are more than the sum of our parts. If our personalities were the result, in part or in whole, of the brain we genetically inherit, then when the brain died so would we. But Jesus Christ promised life after physical death and, a great one at that. As we are unable to see heaven with our physical eyes, so we are unable to see the real ‘us’, despite science’s most advanced tools.

‘Rementing’ demonstrates the reality of 1 Corinthians 6:19, that we are spirit beings in earthly bodies. Dementia is a horrible disease, but for us the best is yet to come!

‘Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit...’ - 1 Corinthians 6:19

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