Live on! (and on and on . . .)

Here’s a website meant to address the discouragement that  can  come with the struggle to live with a disability. Of course as Orthodox Christians we believe that genuine, meaningful, and everlasting life is found in God, and in the Body of Christ, the Temple of the Holy Spirit, the Church, as children of our heavenly Father. During our time on earth we rub shoulders with everybody, whether within or without the Church. Some will be helpful, and some not. This site seeks to help people with disability who feel lost in this world, which, of course, is a good and loving goal. 

So give it a look:

The Live On Movement

Note – (A generous translation of Disability Pride: Disability Self-Respect) See Self-esteem versus Self-respect

Please submit your stories for publication in the upcoming book, “Enter His Gates: Theosis for Families With Special Needs (A Practical Theology of Disability)

Authors Summer Kinard, M.Div., Th.M.  (Tea & Crumples, Hands-On Sunday School)  and Charlotte Riggle (Catherine’s Pascha), are gathering stories from Orthodox Christian families, priests, and ministry leaders about their experience of welcome for children and adults with special needs. They are writing with the blessings of their priests and are in good standing in their local Orthodox parishes. Their forthcoming book, Enter His Gates: Theosis for Families With Special Needs (A Practical Theology of Disability), focuses on welcoming children and families with autism, developmental and learning disabilities, and physical disabilities into the fullness of life in the Orthodox Church. We want to hear from parents, adults with autism, priests and presbyteras/matushkas/kourias, and camp and ministry leaders in every Orthodox jurisdiction about your experiences of welcome in the Orthodox Church.

They will not sell your data to anyone or quote you without permission. The stories we collect might be featured in the book, though you can select the level of acknowledgement or anonymity that you prefer. 
To Access their Survey:

A Short Survey for those submitting stories for the book “Enter His Gates: Theosis for Families With Special Needs (A Practical Theology of Disability)

Here’s Summer Kinard’s Blog disability resource page: 

Two McDonald’s Retirees

“The Power of Weakness,” Fr. Thomas Hopko (video)

A talk by the late Father Thomas Hopko of blessed memory. This may not address disability issues directly, but it certainly relates to them. A person with a disability may grasp this promise more easily than a person who is more normally functional in either mind or body, because their sense of loss, via their particular disability, which they live with every day, may help them rely less on their human capacities and embrace divine aid more readily.

An impassioned plea to keep assisted suicide illegal by a person with a disability

Lizz Carr, from the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland) speaks from her vulnerability against doctor-assisted suicide, which, she asserts, will put all disabled people at risk. This is because it will create pressure on persons with disability to choose this legal option, to relieve their family, or perhaps society, of the “burden” of their care.

I, like most people are not disabled in bodily or mental function, can only imagine what such a disability would be like, and many of us imagine that life would not be worth living that way. Does that give the right to the majority to impose this view on persons with disability? No! As fellow human beings with free choice, they can decide for themselves the value of their lives, which they very well may, despite their limitations, treasure. And it is the responsibility of persons without such disabilities to think the best of their lives, and to encourage and to assist them as we can.

Lizz Carr says it best on You Tube (8:13): 

An example of an abuse of this legal option in the Netherlands:

A Regional Review Committee clears Dutch doctor who asked family to hold patient down as she carried out euthanasia procedure

 

How to understand a cross

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“through our own personal cross and struggle we may learn to appreciate the struggles of others . . . 

Though we cannot know the personal struggles of our neighbor, we may try to understand our brother’s cross by approaching with humilty.”

To access the rest of this brief word of wisdom:

How to understand a cross

 From the website  The Ascetic Experience 

The picture is from the article.

A Pre-School Teacher

The article below, from Agence France Presse, relates the story of  Noelia Garella, who became the first teacher in Argentina with Down syndrome.

“I adore this. Ever since I was little, I have always wanted to be a teacher, because I like children so much,” she tells AFP.

“I want them to read and listen, because in society people have to listen to one another.”

To Access the article:

Argentine woman with Down syndrome inspires as teacher, by Paula Bustamante, AFP 

A one minute video featuring Ms. Garella:


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