These are the Disability Emphasis Week devotionals (volume 2) by special education teacher Barbara Newman.
This hymn was commissioned for a national conference on disabilities hosted by Second Presbyterian Church in Little Rock, Arkansas. Presbyterians for Disability Concerns has posted it on their website. This hymn was included in the United Church of Canada’s hymnal supplement, More Voices.
A prayer by Elizabeth E. Schultz to offer at a Diversity/Disability Awareness service.
If it is true that people are excluded from church for social- skill reasons, what changes might be instituted within the social environment that would benefit not only persons with disabilities but the larger population as well? What “social ramp” would cause more people to have access and find social acceptance?
Last week I asked why we tend to limit our idea of diversity in church to ethnic diversity. Like one reader responded to the question last week, diversity of ability falls outside of most people's thinking because most people don't want people with disabilities included in their activities.
When we envision the diverse church, in our minds' eye, we see a diversity of skin colors, foods, ethnic identities, and languages. Usually, we also see we see the young and the old, male and female. But in our vision of the diverse church, we rarely see a boy who uses a wheelchair, woman who lives with mental illness, a girl with Down Syndrome, a man who is blind, or a woman who is Deaf and uses sign language. Why?
Caring begins with something as simple as a friendly greeting. Here are some tips for proper etiquette with a person with a disability.