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Content about Church work with people with disabilities

June 3, 2003

The family of God is not complete unless all are present—people of all ages and races and physical abilities.What do disabilities have to do with worship and justice? People with disabilities were the last group in the United States to receive legal rights. Those with mental retardation were not allowed to go to school until 1974; they were not allowed to live in communities (in group homes) until the 1980s.

December 1, 1990

Harold Wylie is an elderly and significantly retarded member of Grace Church. Though ambulatory, he walks with difficulty; his language skills are limited. Conversation with Harold consists mainly of a few stock phrases, the most frequent being "How ya doin' buddy," accompanied by a pat on the back. Harold speaks this line many times each Sunday, occasionally with a twist. Once I heard him greet our pastor with the words, "Hello you devil you!" Only Harold could get away with that, though others of us are tempted to try!