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Second Forgetting

Remembering the Power of the Gospel during Alzheimer’s Disease
Dr. Benjamin T. Mast
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There is hope in Alzheimer's disease, but it isn't where most people look for it...

Any form of dementia is terrifying and lonely for both the one suffering it and for those close to them. How do our relationships with those we love change with loss of memory or clarity of thought? What happens to our relationship with God?

For those suffering from early-stage Alzheimer's, for their friends and family, community and church, this book will help you understand the disease itself, how to love and care for those affected by it, and how to see the hope that's greater than it: we may forget, but God always remembers.

With pastoral tenderness and gospel confidence, Dr. Benjamin Mast shares his expertise on the subject and displays the power of the gospel that remains intact even when memory fades. Second Forgetting provides:

  • Up-to-date answers to common questions about the disease and its effect on personal identity and faith.
  • Personal stories of those affected and the loved ones who care for them and what their experiences were like—where they found hope and how they most needed support.
  • Practical suggestions for how the church can come alongside families and those struggling or hurting.

When a person is diagnosed with Alzheimer's, they face great uncertainty, knowing that they can expect to live their remaining years with increasing confusion and progressively greater reliance upon other people to care for them. Dr. Mast will help you see how Alzheimer's disease cannot have the final say on God's unforgotten children.

About the Author

Dr. Benjamin Mast, Ph.D, is a licensed clinical psychologist, Associate Professor in Psychological & Brain Sciences and Geriatric Medicine at the University of Louisville, and an elder at Sojourn Community Church, Louisville, Kentucky.


One of the greatest fears of growing old is the ever-increasing possibility of developing Alzheimer’s or another dementia, raising the lament, “Who am I if I can’t remember who I am?” Using Scripture and inspiring testimonies of dementia-afflicted people he has known and helped, Dr. Mast shows the reader how to respond to the experience of dementia as God’s beloved children. -- Jane M. Thibault, PhD, Clinical Professor Emerita, Clinical Gerontologist, University of Louisville, School of Medicine

Second Forgetting is filled with wisdom and hope and soaked in the compassion, grace, and kindness of God. It is a fascinating book---it is theologically rich and very practical on how to care for those struggling with Alzheimer’s and for their family members. -- Justin Holcomb, Episcopal priest, seminary professor, and author of Know the Creeds and Councils and Know the Heretics.

What is a Christian to think when a loved one who has been faithful to God’s commands and steeped in his Word behaves in ways that are strange to family and even to self? Do we fear ourselves that we may lose our memory, our mind, such that all spiritual that we value dissolves into apparent oblivion? Ben Mast has provided us with much-needed perspective and encouragement about the ongoing interaction among God, family, and those who begin to forget. -- Dan G. Blazer MD, MPH, PhD, JP Gibbons Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina

Dr. Mast leads the reader through Second Forgetting to Second Remembering as he reminds us that all people have infinite value and that God remembers each person no matter the circumstances. This book contains a powerful message of hope, written especially for those of the Christian faith, but it also contains eternal truths helpful for individuals of all faiths. This message is a must for those of us dedicated to a better way of communicating and relating to the person with dementia. -- Virginia Bell, MSW, co-author of the Best Friends Approach books

We forget … God always remembers. Thank you, Ben, for this profound reminder. -- Jolene Brackey, national speaker on Alzheimer's Disease, author of Creating Moments of Joy

Second Forgetting isn’t simply scientific theories regarding the brain, Alzheimer’s, and memory loss, but the deep, prayerful, and careful counsel of a pastor. Dr. Mast is not only a seasoned scholar but a soul physician. My hope is that his prescription would lead to a healthier, holier and more hopeful church. Buy this book. -- Daniel Montgomery, Pastor of Sojourn Community Church, Louisville, KY, Author of Faithmapping and PROOF: Finding Freedom through the Intoxicating Joy of Irresistible Grace

My mother, one the godliest people to ever walk on this earth, died from Alzheimer’s. The debilitating effects of this disease were almost more than we could bear. A book like this would have been worth its weight in gold! I cannot commend highly enough what a gift it will be to families everywhere. -- Daniel L. Akin, President, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary

When memory is compromised we lose touch with connections to people … and also with God. Benjamin Mast takes us into the inside of memory loss and helps us understand from within what it is like to experience such a tragic, disabling disease. Caregivers who read this book will respond more empathically and effectively to people who struggle to remember. -- Ronald J. Nydam, Ph.D., D.Min., Professor of Pastoral Care, Calvin Theological Seminary; Author of Adoptees Come of Age: Living Within Two Families

An expert in the field of Alzheimer’s, Mast has woven together the latest research with a gospel-centered orientation and the compassion of a caregiver to produce a biblically informed and practical guide for those in the early stages of the disease and those who love or minister to those afflicted. A welcome and needed resource! -- Eric Johnson, Professor of Pastoral Care, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Director of the Society for Christian Psychology

Whether newly diagnosed, caring for a loved one with the diagnosis, or ministering as pastor or friend, readers will find themselves returning repeatedly to the gentle wisdom and compassion conveyed in these pages. -- Susan H. McFadden, Research Consultant, Fox Valley Memory Project, and John T. McFadden, Memory Care Chaplain, Appleton Health Care Center

  • Product Details
  • Page Count: 192
  • Format: Softcover
  • ISBN: 9780310513872
  • Release: September 23, 2014