Several years ago a new resident of Riverview Estates, Miss Peg, began attending worship at Central Baptist. She’s a wonderful lady. She is joyful, inquisitive, loves to laugh at herself, and is a tad bit mischievous. Really, she’s my type of person. If you read my blog with any regularity, Peg is often sharing her reactions in comments.
Shortly after she began attending worship with us, Miss Peg came up to me one day when I was leading chapel at the home. With a twinkle in her eye she said, “We need to talk.” So I sat down next to Peg as she grinned and declared, “I am saving up for an iPad, and I want to know what to get, will you help me?” Seeing as I’d never deny such a request, I took some time over the next few weeks and went over how I used the tablet. I showed her how I read Scripture in the Olive Tree reader and how I controlled my slides from a Keynote remote app 1. She asked me about books and I showed her the Kindle, Nook, and iBooks apps. Then, for fun, I showed her how I used a stylus to write notes in an app. When we got done she was glowing, “Oh I want one.”
This was more than just gadget lust. Miss Peg loved to read, and adored studying the Bible, but as she approached her 90th year the small print of most books and all Bibles was making these beloved activities more and more difficult. When I showed her how the font-size could be easily increased on the iPad, she immediately began dreaming of returning to old beloved activities – though with a new twist. She was determined to purchase one.
It took many months, but a mutual friend ended up helping Miss Peg finish saving up the cash and purchased a used iPad 2 for her off of eBay. Central chipped in money for a iTunes gift card (so she could get the Bibles she wanted, as well as some “for fun” apps) and a stylus. I remember the day I dropped it off for her and showed her how to download a Bible and purchase a book. A light went on in her eyes and she began imagining what she could do with such a tool.
For the last two years Miss Peg has rarely been without her iPad. She uses it to take part in book studies at church, to read the Bible for her own spiritual growth, and has even written sermons on the device. The iPad allowed her to become part of the texting generation, and there have been a number of nights when I’ve gotten a message from her which begins, “I have a question.” 2 Miss Peg loves questions, because she loves learning. She even FaceTimes and loves Facebook.
Unfortunately, the iPad 2 has really entered its end of life. It can barely run iOS 9, and apps written for iOS are simply passing it by. The other week I was helping Miss Peg with something on her iPad and noticed how slow it was. Peg, a little sad, actually pointed out its declining functionality herself. This struck me as one of the great curses of our technological world. In front of me was someone who had greatly benefitted from the mobile computing revolution, but because all hardware has a limited lifespan the doors which the iPad had opened were beginning to slam shut. Soon her iPad would be all but unusable, and this wonderful tool would be taken away from her. I couldn’t allow that to happen.
So I asked my wonderful church if we thought it appropriate to collect the funds to purchase Miss Peg an iPad Air 2 to replace her aging tablet. It’s not the “latest and greatest,” but it will be useable for years to come. Graciously, our Church Council thought it would be a good idea (and even pondered if there were others who might benefit from such an enterprise) and we quietly collected the funds toward the new device.
This morning I borrowed Miss Peg’s iPad 2 under the not-entirely untrue pretense I wanted to speed things up and needed to get her tablet back to my computer in order to do so. This was true, I needed to back up her iPad to my MacBook in order to perform a restore on the new device. Miss Peg, always grateful for help, handed over her tablet without question. I took it home, synced it to my computer, and then went out with our Treasurer to pick up both the new device and a case.
Setting up the new device couldn’t have been more flawless. As I was the one who first set up her online accounts, and saved her passwords, 3 I was even able to activate her iCloud account and download her purchased Olive Tree Bibles on to the new tablet. I then put the iPad in it’s new case, set it back in it’s box, and headed down to Riverview to make the exchange. Here’s what happened next…
Worlds, re-opened. And if there was any doubt, several hours later I received this message from Miss Peg,
(Tomorrow’s Pastor) is.Not coming to preach tomorrow, so I.get to use my NEW iPad. Thank you, thank. You
That’s pretty dang awesome.
- This was before the remote was included in the actual iOS Keynote app. ↩
- And she might be asking for technical support 1% of the time. Mostly Miss Peg asks incredibly deep theological questions. This past week she asked me about the nature of being with Jesus when we die, and what that means for the resurrection of the dead. ↩
- With her permission, of course. ↩