In the United States, we still face a culture that highly values and rewards those who, by the world’s standards, are athletic, physically attractive, young, rich, and talented. Often, our communities of faith mirror these attitudes. Though careful study of the Bible and of the doctrinal standards professed by most of our faith communities reveals stark opposition to these worldly standards, our churches are made up of people who often do not reflect the truths found in our scriptural texts. Without knowing it, communities of faith are all too often causing harm to those we are called to love and welcome. All God’s Children Ministries provides consultative services and training programs to help churches become places of welcome and belonging for those affected by disability.
Why should the church care about disability-related issues?
* Persons affected by disability and their families are often among the most marginalized members of our communities, both here in the United States and around the world.
* God clearly values and loves each person as His precious child, regardless of abilities or disabilities.
* The gospels report numerous accounts of Jesus ministering to the needs of persons affected by disability.
* Without training and understanding, we often unintentionally exclude or marginalize those with disabilities.
* We can become more like the church Jesus wants us to be by honoring the gifts and graces of all people and meeting their needs.
* When we fail to create a place of welcome and true belonging for all people in our churches, we are less than we could be.
What we are really talking about here is setting the stage for a cultural shift to occur, where we see people the way God sees them, the way Jesus saw them when he walked among us here on earth, seeing each one of infinite and sacred worth just because they are part of God’s creation.
Equipping Churches to Welcome In
We equip churches to open their doors and hearts a little wider to people with disabilities. We use a variety of methods, such as preaching the Word or providing seminars and educational programs designed to help increase the ways that the church can welcome and value those among us with disabilities and create a place where everyone can experience true belonging,
Equipping Churches to Reach Out
We also equip churches to be ready and able to reach outside of their walls, into their communities, and around the world to minister to those whose lives are affected by disability. Regionally, we offer opportunities for churches and individuals to partner with us through the Ramps of Hope program. We also offer international outreach opportunities. We are in the planning stages of new local outreach ministries as well.
As we reach out in unconditional love to serve our neighbors at the point of their need, we are given a precious opportunity to build relationships through which we will be able to offer them Christ. How might God be calling you to get involved? Come and see what God can do through you.