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Men Engaging the Third Age 2019

  May 15 - May 17, 2019 Wed 5:00 PM - Fri 1:30 PM

“I wish only to be a man”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (resister, Nazi fascism)
Tegel Prison, Berlin, 1944

Goal: …provide opportunity for older men (50+) to explore Jesus as a way to engage the third age of their lives with intention, clarity, and integrity in the company of other men.

This program provides opportunity for older men to deepen and focus their attempts to engage the third age in the company of other men.

The “third age” is late life from the time a person begins to realize they are “getting old” until the time they die, without putting a definite number on it.

The last century has seen the “third age” deepen and expand for people in late life in our culture with longer lives and earlier retirement. Men can have particular difficulty in making the transition from working person to non-entity, from public to private life, from high status to low status. They can have trouble locating paths of usefulness and focus in family and community, of healthy sexuality in relationships, of friendship and support with other men, and meaning and direction for life itself however named.

In this program we will hear more about late life, the “third age”, and the challenges and invitations it presents to men at this time and place. We will hear stories of other men attempting to do that within their own vision and circumstances, and have opportunity to tell our own story if we wish to do so, in the wise space of a few other listening men.

It will be undertaken in a contemplative way throughout, that is, within a rhythm of lively conversation and quiet solitude, in large groups and small groups, with an assumption that all life is of spiritual quality however named. We will explore the practices, spiritual or otherwise, with which we privately maintain and focus ourselves within the challenges and invitations of everyday life, and how we might strengthen them if desired.

Participants are asked to read “On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity, and Getting Old” by Parker Palmer (2019)  ($23.36 by way of preparation, and if possible: “Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time: The Historical Jesus and the Heart of Contemporary Faith” by Marcus Borg (1994).

Prior to coming, participants are encouraged to note, and be prepared to share if it seems right, some reflections on what they would like to get out of this time.

This program is grounded in the Christian tradition.

Program Cost:

Shared room: $471 (tuition, meals & shared accommodations)  

Private room: $521 (tuition, meals & single room lodging)

No accomodations: $391 (tuition & meals only)

Can't afford it?

Please register as normal and indicate "partial bursary" or "full bursary" in the payment options and we will get in touch with you.


Wilf Bean

Wilf Bean

Wilf Beanis a retired adult educator with a continuing interest in personal and social transformation. A former staff member of Coady International Institute, St FXU Antigonish, Wilf later worked at Tatamagouche Centre.  He is presently involved in efforts to resist gold exploration in the Tatamagouche watershed. He has been a member of a local men’s group for well over a decade and is also co-leading a study on new perspectives on Christianity.

Peter Hough

Peter Hough is engaged in the third age of life as a very active “retiree”.  His third age spiritual path led to a renewed interest in the Christian tradition and daily meditative practice. With a heightened awareness of the many challenges facing our local and global communities he continues to seek ways to contribute to the social and spiritual transformation which he sees as a key element for a viable future.  In this pursuit he continues his active involvement as a director of co-operatives involved in sustainability consulting, co-op development, and finance, and chairs the Board of Directors of Tatamagouche Centre.

Don MacDougall

Don MacDougallDon MacDougall is a 3rd age adult educator interested in assisting the fullness of life, particularly now the spiritual journeys of men. A former university minister and program director at Tatamagouche Centre, he has led many wilderness retreats for youth and adult men. He is a founder of the Contemplative Pathways Program for Spiritual Deepening and Guidance, and currently leads adult conversations on the relevance of Jesus for post-modern life. He has been part of a support group for men in Fredericton for the past 30 years, and is experimenting with meditation among men who want to take Jesus seriously.

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