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UK News

Prayer network says connect with others after research shows almost one in 20 pensioners face Christmas alone

by Alex Collett

The UK director of Neighbourhood Prayer Network has told Premier "we need to be seeking out those in our communities" as Age UK has warned almost one in 20 pensioners are facing Christmas alone this year.

The research reported by the Telegraph, has said the impact of cost of living crisis is set to be a major factors as to why older people are already suffering from loneliness.

Age UK revealed two in five people are now unable to eat out, go on trips and do physical activity because it is too expensive.

UK Director of Neighbourhood Prayer Network, Adam May told Premier this issue presents a new challenge for the church to tackle: "This is a real challenge for us, as the church, how are we going to help people to realise that they're called not to live a life that's soulless and solitary. 

"We need to be seeking out those in our communities, who would be feeling alone or cold

"As Jesus reminds us to have life and life in all its fullness, we're aware of the cost of living crisis, it is impacting older people, particularly those who would be struggling anyway at this time of year, but particularly this year, because of the cost of living crisis

"Christmas day when we celebrate the birth of the Saviour is one of those times when we should be sharing and being community together with friends and with family and yet warning 21 older people are saying that this year, they are not even going to speak to anybody."

The research also revealed that one in 21 (or 60,000) older people will not speak to anyone on Christmas Day this year.

Mr May says at Neighbourhood Prayer Network, says they will be aiming to support lonely people this Christmas: "We have something called the menu of ideas and we have run that in previous years and we're going to offer it again this Christmas on Christmas Eve Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Eve, 

"These are practical examples of things that we can do, small stuff to help support older people in our community.

"One of those ideas has been to contact and to speak to an older person and as this research says, one in 21 older people are not going to speak to anybody this Christmas Day. 

"So my question to you all is, who are you going to ring this Christmas?"

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