DTS Magazine

3 Ways Churches Can Minister to the Disabled

Rick Smith (ThM, 2012) has a rambunctious, adorable two-year-old who has Down syndrome. Rick chronicles each day in his son’s life on noahsdad.com in an effort to give encouragement to parents of kids with Down’s and to parents who discover their unborn child may have an extra chromosome. The Smiths’ story has appeared in multiple media outlets. Here’s Rick’s advice to churches:

  1. Initiate conversations about how the church can accommodate people with disabilities: Should you have an interpreter for the deaf? Is your sanctuary wheelchair-accessible? Are your Sunday school curricula adaptable to children who have sensory challenges?
  2. Ask questions. People with disabilities and parents of kids with special needs want to be asked about what makes them distinct.
  3. Remember the Holy Spirit has given spiritual gifts to folks with disabilities who are part of the body of Christ.

Visit Rick's blog for more insight on parenting and ministering to those with disabilities.

Photo courtesy of Rick Smith.
Rick Smith
Rick Smith is the founder and president of Hope Story, a team of medical professionals and storytellers who help people tell their stories and share them with people that need to hear it the most. First, the organization helps medical professionals deliver hopefully stories to their patients. Second, they also help parents raising children with Down syndrome leverage their unique story to bring hope to parents whose child has received a Down syndrome diagnosis. Finally, Hope Story connects parents whose child has received a new Down syndrome diagnosis to parents who have a child with Down syndrome so that they can receive, encouragement, support, and hope.
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