"It may be that people who are more involved in religious activities or are personally more spiritual are doing something that makes them feel better emotionally and helps them live longer and more healthily."
I am not quite an spirituality person: I do not visit often church or places where religion is spread, either make promisses or pray to an god. But, despite mine point of view, I observe that in my family and friends, people get stronger when they put their expectations along with a religion. They believe they can be stronger and become more optimistic with certain kind of problems (health mainly).
When you do not have any perspectives of improving your situation, you may blame yourself for passing through that moment, or you may choose to believe in a spiritual higher strength to help you face that problem. This kind of thought may help the elderly improving their emotions, and if the "doctor" says that they're facing a difficult health problem, they still can believe there is something/someone omnipotent that is standing beside them.
People who attend religious services, or who feel they are spiritual, experience lower levels of depression and anxiety;
display signs of better health, such as lower blood pressure and fewer strokes; and say they generally feel healthier.