Senior Living

‘Ageless’ St. Louisans add talents to the community

Pat Kaspar continues to advocate for seniors.

Patricia Kaspar, 80, has dedicated her life to improving the health and welfare of seniors across Missouri. She's a fixture in Jefferson City where she educates legislators on a wide range of senior health and Medicaid funding issues on behalf of LeadingAge Missouri.

Sister Antona Ebo, 92, a Franciscan Sister of Mary, is a pioneer in our nation's fight for civil rights. She travels the country spreading a message of love, compassion and respect for others.

DuBourg baseball players playing again 44 years later

John Becvar, left, and Tom Long wore Bishop DuBourg hats with the uniforms they wear for games in the St. Louis Baseball Forever League. Becvar joked that he had to retire in order to find time to play ball.

John Becvar and Tom Long played baseball together 44 years ago at Bishop DuBourg High School, making varsity as sophomores.

They're at it again, not for the Catholic school in south St. Louis, but for the Jets in the St. Louis Baseball Forever League's over-60 division. Long has been in the league for three years and started recruiting old teammate Becvar at their 40th class reunion in 2013.

St. Wenceslaus ‘treasure’ continues to make a difference

Ellspermann visited with Father Jim Wuerth, MSF, pastor of St. Wenceslaus Parish, and fellow parishioner Jody James after a Mass in January marking Ellspermann’s 100th birthday.

The historic home in which Esther Ellspermann lives — built 149 years ago — was less than 50 years old when she was born there on Jan. 13, 1915.

One of her secrets to living to 100, almost 101 now, is simple.

"I entertain a lot," she said. "I like parties."

In September, she hosted a dozen people for an indoor picnic at her home. Over the years, guests have included the Sisters of the Most Precious Blood from St. Agatha Parish, and she likes to get together with a group with which she made frequent retreats at White House Jesuit Retreat.

Foster Grandparent Program fills a gap for children, seniors

Sid Hastings

Foster Grandparent Frank Weeden, right, helped a University City Children’s Center student put on his coat before going outside to play at the center in University City Oct. 28. The Foster Grandparent Program administered by Cardinal Ritter Senior Services puts volunteers at the center in University City and at other sites in the St. Louis area.

The pre-school teacher gave the little boy his coat, and he immediately ran to "Grandpa Frank" for assistance.

In another classroom at the University City Children's Center, a girl sat on the lap of "Grandma Ann" listening intently as the volunteer read a book to her.

The early learning center serves children from six weeks to 6 years old. The volunteers are from the Foster Grandparent Program operated by Cardinal Ritter Senior Services, a Catholic Charities agency providing a continuum of care to senior adults throughout the archdiocese.

Friary blessed with veteran priest’s cheerful presence

Franciscan Father Bernardine Hahn enjoys keeping a prayerful presence at St. Anthony’s Friary in south St. Louis. In his assignments, including as a chaplain at the Poor Clares in south St. Louis County, he was known for his evangelizing spirit, simple joy and peaceful presence.

The Franciscan Friary on Meramec Street in south St. Louis is a happy place, perhaps due in part to the smiles and wise observations of a priest with 72 years of experience, having served as a pastor, pastoral assistant and chaplain in Iowa, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Texas.

It’s God’s plan, so embrace aging with gusto

Why, you may ask, do some people mature with such patience and grace, with wholeness and peace while others protest, resist or simply resign?

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