As modern technology prolongs life, a life well-lived can often end with a long and painful struggle.
Increasingly we have choices about end-of-life options that give us more control over when and how we die.
A “good death” is more likely when medical practitioners and those supporting the dying person know more about these options.
The Chapel Hill Zen Center is offering an hour discussion at 11 a.m. Sunday on the medical, ethical and legal issues involving Voluntary Stopping of Eating and Drinking, a little-known, end-of-life option.
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The discussion will be led by Elliott and Susan Schaffer who will talk about Susan's mother, who lived in a retirement community in New Jersey.
Elliott is a retired physician, a geriatrician who was formerly the medical director at Martins Run Life Care Community in Media, Penn. He has practiced Buddhism for 37 years. Susan is a retired attorney who was formerly senior counsel at AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals.
He will discuss the medical, physiological and logistical issues that may come up in connection with this option. As a retired attorney, Susan will provide information about the legal issues and the ethical issues. Voluntary Stopping of Eating and Drinking is legal in all 50 states.
The Chapel Hill Zen Center is located at 5322 N.C. 86 north, two miles north of I-40 at exit 266.
Call the center for details, 919-967-0861.
LGBT-friendly gospel hour
Singer/songwriter/performance artist and interfaith minister the Rev. Yolanda (aka Roger Anthony Yolanda Mapes) will be in Chapel Hill Saturday to host a 7:30 p.m. screening of his latest project, “Rev. Yolanda's New Old Time Gospel Hour: The Movie,” at Unity Center of Peace, 8800 Seawell Road.
The film is a collaboration between Mapes, whose work as an artist and activist has earned him a place in the LGBT Hall of Fame, and New Thought filmmaker Ike Allen, who focuses on sharing stories of love, diversity, freedom and full self-expression .
In addition to the film, Rev. Yolanda will perform a selection of some of his greatest hits and lead a discussion on Allen's “Inclusive Project” with its message of “moving beyond differences to seeing everyone as beautiful and loveable.”
Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door. Call 919-968-1854 for more information.
Unity Center of Peace is part of the New Thought Movement that embraces a positive path for spiritual living and is a LGBT-friendly community.
Family and Friends Day
Terrell's Creek Missionary Baptist Church of Chapel Hill will hold its annual Family and Friends Day service at 3 p.m. Sunday.
The Rev. Albert Williams, pastor of Staunton Memorial Church of Pittsboro, will be the guest speaker. He will be accompanied by his choir and congregation.
Family and Friends Day is a time to pay tribute to the families of the church who have played a role in its 153-year history.
Lunch will be served from 1:15 to 2:45 p.m. All are welcome.
The church is located at 3415 Old Greensboro Road.
The Hamilton College Choir will perform at 3 p.m. Sunday at University United Methodist Church, 150 E. Franklin St. The performance is free and open to the public.
The program includes sacred and secular music, including Hogan’s “I Can Tell the World,” Joel’s “And So it Goes,” Bach’s “Alles Was Wodem Hat” and Schultz’s “Deutsches Magnificat.”
The Hamilton College Choir boasts an uninterrupted tradition of fine choral singing that dates back for more than a century. It is directed by G. Roberts Kolb, professor of music and director of choral music at the college since 1981.
‘Knock at the Door’
The documentary “A Knock at the Door” will be shown at 3:30 p.m. Sunday by the Ethical Humanist Society of the Triangle at 200 S. Elliott Road.
The film tells the story of Paulette Terwilliger and her mother who fled Paris to escape the Nazi persecution of Jews after Paris became occupied territory.
The film features interviews with the woman who was the baby on that perilous journey 70 years ago. It also features footage and narration of the Nazis occupation of France.
The filmmaker, Gregg McPherson, and Terwilliger will be there to answer questions.
The showing of the full-length film is free and open to the public.
Dharma Camp benefit
The Won-Buddhist Meditation Temple will hold a benefit concert for Dharma Camp scholarships from 7:30 to 8:45 p.m. Friday, March 20.
Each summer the temple offers a unique five-day Dharma Camp for children. Because of growing interest, this summer it will offer a week in June and/or a week in July.
Last year 15 children received scholarships.
The concert will faeture music on violin, flute, piano, dulcimer and guitar, as well as singing.
A $10 to $20 donation is suggested.
The Meditation Temple is located at 8021 Old N.C. 86.
Mental illness conference
Early registration ends March 20 for a day-long conference open to anyone who wants to learn more about mental illness and the community’s role in recovery.
Faith Connections on Mental Illness will hold its fifth annual conference on Friday, April 10, at St. Thomas More Catholic Church.
Keynote speaker Amy Simpson is senior editor of Leadership Journal and author of “Troubled Minds: Mental Illness and the Church's Mission” and “Anxious: Choosing Faith in a World of Worry.”
Invited speaker the Rev. Alan Johnson, co-founder of Interfaith Netwrk on Mental Illness, will lead discussions focusing on specific srteps for congregations to start a mental health ministry.
Guest speakers Shelly Danser and John Gilmore will lead break-out sessions.
Registration is $25 per person before March 20 and $35 thereafter. Professional CEUs are optional for an additional $20 via Wake AHEC.
Register online at http://www.wakeahec.orgor call 919-967-5403 for a mail-in registration form.
Since the conference draws attendees from across the state, early registration is recommended as attendance is capped at 300.
Contact Flo Johnston at email@example.com or call 910-361-4135.