CAPTION: Dr Jennifer Bute the latest speaker announced for the conference

Major dementia conference to take place in Exeter

Posted: 16th March, 2017

A ground breaking conference on dementia is to take place in Devon, hosted by the Diocese of Exeter.

The conference, Exploring God in dementia: theology, spirituality and personhood, will address issues including where is God in dementia.

One of the speakers, Dr Jennifer Bute, has herself been diagnosed with early onset dementia. Dr Jennifer Bute headed up a missions hospital in South Africa before becoming a GP in Southampton where she ran a large medical practice for 25 years. She was diagnosed with early-onset dementia in 2009 and now she is a leading advocate for people living with dementia raising awareness and giving an insider’s perspective on what it’s like to live with the illness.

Dr Bute talks of how we can learn from people with dementia: “The Bible comes alive in a new way when read from the perspective of someone with dementia. The Church can learn from people with dementia as well as encourage and grow their relationship with God. Enabling churches to be more dementia-friendly is indeed extremely important but it could miss out the wonder and glory of those with dementia.”

The conference which takes place on May 11 2017 from 10am-4pm is for clergy and church leaders in the south west.

Bishop Robert is helping to host the day which aims to update church leaders about current thinking and good practice for people living with dementia.

The programme includes:

Remembering God: faith and hope in a time of dementia
Dr Peter Kevern, Associate Professor in Values in Care, Staffordshire University
Urban and Rural Dementia the Challenges and Solutions
Ian Sherriff, Academic Partnership Lead for Dementia at Plymouth University

Remembering the person: our language, values and actions
Dr Pia Matthews, lecturer in theology, philosophy, bioethics, medical law and healthcare chaplaincy at St Mary’s University, Twickenham

Workshops include:

Partnering in care
Dementia and ethics
Ministry in care homes
Intergenerational Church
Cognitive health in later life
Intro to dementia

Exploring God in dementia: theology, spirituality and personhood

10am – 4pm Thu 11 May 2017

Riverside Conference Centre, Exeter, EX4 1DU

Cost £15

Please book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment because spaces are limited. The cost £15 includes lunch.

For those without access to the internet, there is an alternative booking form in the Exploring God in dementia leaflet.

This Ecumenical Study Day has been organised by a team representing dioceses, districts and associations from across the South West region.

Further information email Sally Farrant, Church and Society at The Diocese of Exeter.