Insurance Update
September 2014
Issue No. 50         
In this issue
Let's eat for the health of it.
September is Healthy Aging® Month.
Five steps to finding your passion.
Long-Term Care Insurance

Let's eat for the health of it 

Try some easy steps to eat for better health.  



About Us 

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 A not-for-profit ministry of
Church of the Brethren Benefit Trust Inc.

Church of the Brethren Insurance Services provides ancillary coverage for ministers and other employees of congregations, districts, and camps.
Medical and ancillary plans are available to Brethren-affiliated employer groups.
Long-Term Care Insurance is available for all members of the Church of the Brethren, their family and friends, and employees of Church of the Brethren-affiliated agencies, organizations, colleges, and retirement communities.  
Contact Us 
1505 Dundee Ave., Elgin, IL 60120


September always represents an ending and a beginning. Sadly, it marks the end of summer. But it's also the beginning of the school year, when we see people of all ages heading back to class to begin another round of studies. Despite the fact that for many folks, those school days are far in the distant past, we should never stop learning. September may even bring on a nostalgic anticipation of starting new classes, meeting new people, or traveling new roads. So why not think about trying something new each September, despite your age? According to some studies, it's a healthy step to take as you're aging!


And speaking of aging, did you realize that 70 percent of retirement-aged people will require some type of long-term health service? If you are in that age bracket, or maybe even caring for aged parents, you'll be interested in the article below on America's long-term care costs.

Scott, Tammy, and Connie
AgingSeptember is Healthy Aging® Month 
Time to Celebrate Positive Aging!

It's never too late to find a new career, a new sport, passion, or hobby. Carolyn Worthington is the creator of "September is Healthy Aging® Month," an annual health observance designed to focus national attention on the positive aspects of growing older. Now in its second decade, Worthington says "September is Healthy Aging® Month" provides inspiration and practical ideas for adults, ages 50-plus, to improve their physical, mental, social, and financial well-being. Who says you have to do something related to what you studied in school? Who says you can't start your own home business later in life, test your physical prowess, or do something wildly different from anything you've done before? 


Why Healthy Aging?

According to Worthington, "We saw a need to draw attention to the myths of aging, to shout out, 'Hey, it's not too late to take control of your health, it's never too late to get started on something new.' Why not think about the positive aspects of aging instead of the stereotypes and the negative aspects?" She says she chose September as a time when many people think about getting started on new tasks after the summer. Drawing on the "back to school" urge embedded in everyone from childhood, the observance month's activities are designed to encourage people to rejuvenate and get going with positive measures that can impact the areas of physical, social, financial, and mental wellness. Here is a list of nine possibilities for you.


1. BACK TO SCHOOL. It's never too late ... take courses to refocus your career, enhance your skill set, and increase your earning power. Pursuing a higher degree at this point in life may seem overwhelming, but here are some tips: Choose a focus or specialization that you are passionate about -- scheduling and making time to prepare for class will be much more challenging for you if you don't enjoy your field of study. And remember that if you are schedule-challenged, you can pursue your degree through online courses.


2. JOB HUNTING? YOU ARE NEVER TOO OLD TO BE AN INTERN. You're never too old to start at the bottom. Many employers now hire only after they've seen the quality of the employee, so an internship is your opportunity to show off your mature skills. Check for college and department websites that offer detailed listings.


3. TAKE A VOLUNTEER VACATION. Visit new places, connect, and give back. Many travelers today are opting out of the self-indulgent vacation and opting in for the chance to "give back" through a volunteer vacation. These trips are a great way to try something new, fulfill a dream, or experiment living in a different place, for a short or longer time commitment. Volunteer Vacations Across America is a good resource with more than 200 trips for volunteering to help people. Brethren Volunteer Service also is a great source of possibilities.


4. DANCE LIKE THERE'S NO TOMORROW. Older adults getting regular physical exercise are 60 percent less likely to get dementia. Exercise increases oxygen to the brain and releases a protein that strengthens cells and neurons. Dance involves all of the above plus the cerebral activity present in learning and memory.


5. HIT THE ROAD. Travel is one of the top picks when people are asked what they would do if they had more time. Sometimes the money factor makes that dream fall apart. There are several websites that offer tips for finding good fares and rates --,,,, and A relatively new one is, "a community of travelers that provides members with insider access, expert knowledge, and exclusive deals on the world's greatest vacations." They curate travel experiences, which means they only recommend places they've loved and would go to again.


6. BECOME A ROCK 'N' ROLL STAR. For a weekend anyway. Here's a good one for the bucket list. Check out Rock 'n' Roll Fantasy Camp (, where mere mortals jam with rock legends, write or record an original song, and play live on stage at a major concert venue. Past camps have been held in New York City, Woodstock, and London. This is a great decade gift or corporate event too. This is an ideal adventure for those aging wannabes who are looking for the ultimate rock-star experience, and the camp benefits charities with part of its profits.


7. L EARN TO PAINT A LANDSCAPE OR STILL LIFE. Complete a landscape, seascape, floral, or still-life painting in one class. No experience necessary. Classes like this are offered in many communities through local park districts, community colleges, or even private studios, which offer them in the evening for a fee that includes everything you need to complete your own masterpiece.


8. FOLLOW YOUR PASSION. Try a new sport or pick up on one you left behind in your early days. What about surfing, hiking, or skiing? It's never too late, and there are many locations offering courses, trips, and lessons. Check your local fitness center or sporting goods stores for information on fitness-related day trips of all kinds.


9. EAT FRESH. Make a commitment to add more fresh fruits and vegetables to your diet. September is still harvest time in many areas, so seek out local farmers markets and buy local produce. Make it a point to cook meals from scratch ... skip the processed foods as much as you can.

Adapted from Healthy Aging®.
passionFive steps to finding your passion
Discovering what you love most is an adventure in itself
Discovering and claiming something you love to do has an amazing effect on your entire life. It's like a tiny perfect raindrop landing on a previously smooth, unremarkable expanse of water. The instant the drop arrives, beautiful waves of ever-enlarging rings flow across the entire surface, spreading out virtually to infinity.


Here's how you can start your search -- 


1) Inventory your talents

What are you good at or have a natural aptitude for? Forget about what you're good at but don't really like doing much. What are the things you have a knack for that delight or happily occupy you?


Are there things you like to do that you don't think you're that good at, that other people have complimented you on? Perhaps you even dismissed or rejected their enthusiasm. Identifying things you love that you're good at is a great way to unearth potential passions. Don't be concerned if what you love isn't practical or common.


Please note though that you don't have to be good at something for it to qualify as a "passion." You don't have to ever earn a penny of income from it either. Talent can simply be a clue. When it comes to your passions, the only thing that matters is that you enjoy them.


2) Pay attention to what annoys you or makes you jealous 

Are there people doing things that are "frivolous" who annoy you? Take a closer look at that annoyance. Is the truth behind your annoyance that you really wish you could live so freely, that you didn't have so many serious responsibilities and could be as "immature" as they are?


3) Think of what you loved to do as a child

This is probably the simplest way to unearth what pursuits hold the potential to light up your days. Before the grown-ups get to us with their ideas, most of us know exactly who we are and what would make us happiest.


Were you obsessed with horses? Maybe you should head to a dude ranch for your next vacation.


Loved finger painting or drawing? Sign up for an art class.


Sang at the top of your lungs until people begged you to stop? Think about joining a local choir or starting your own garage band!


4) What makes you lose track of time?

What would you love to spend hours doing, that you never get enough time to do? That's a passion, and you probably need to do it more than you are.


5) See your passion hunt as a fun, joyful adventure

People put pressure on themselves to find their passion. It's critically important to discover and engage in things that light you up, but it's just as important to cultivate an unserious, child-like attitude of play, wonder, and adventure.


When you deliberately open yourself to noticing things you might enjoy doing, don't be afraid of getting it wrong. It's all an adventure -- you're learning and growing as you go. Happiness research shows that trying new things increases dopamine levels in the brain, contributing to sustained levels of contentment. So try away!


Notice what you love. Notice what makes you feel like a kid. Notice what you long to have more time for.


Make time for these things, whatever you can manage, and watch your life start to change.  


(Adapted from Psychology Today)
 LTCILong-Term Care Insurance

Part of healthy aging is being prepared for the days when you might not feel quite as healthy and young anymore. Or maybe you are still young at heart and feeling great, but your parents are beginning to slow down and need more help. Long-term care insurance typically covers home care, skilled care, assisted living, respite care, and hospice care. Commonly included are services for people who have lost two or more activities of daily living -- bathing, eating, toileting, continence, and transferring -- or have cognitive impairment. Many older Americans are not financially prepared for this need. That's not surprising, given the cost of such care. According to, a semiprivate room in a nursing facility will cost, on average, about $74,000 a year. Home health aide services run approximately $45,000 annually.  


Planning ahead for your medical future could save you in the long run. If you are interested in obtaining this coverage, contact Brethren Insurance Services at or 800-746-1505 for a free, no-obligation proposal or click here to request more information.