from The Cathedral Voice: DISABILITY COMMITTEE
By Phaedra Vasiliki Damianakos
As Christians, from birth, we are pledged to follow the words of Jesus and to devote our lives to loving and nurturing the lives of our fellow man. Jesus said, “If you love not man, you love not God.” On the surface, this statement seems obvious and easy to understand. But, what is “man”? Is it also “woman”? the sick, the elderly, needy children and their families or the disabled? When we are baptized, we were initiated into a religion of helping others, man or woman. We must help Jesus carry the heavy that He labored to lift. In some ways, the definition of the “sick” and that of “disabled” overlap. As Americans, however, we realize that “disability” in our country is strictly embraced by the law and that is underscored, by law. The disabled are also part of our human family and part of our Greek Orthodox family. They are Americans. As the law mandates, the disabled must be included as part of the larger activities of society.
At the wheelchair-accessible Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, the church would like to form a group to welcome disabled persons to our parish. We would like to learn who those people are so we can give assistance to them or provide information, in any way we can. We would like them to know that the disabled are welcome into our church as Jesus loved the disabled and cured many of them, too. Could we have articles written on disability for the “Orthodox Observer” or have a special liturgy once a year for the disabled on a day designated as “Disability Day” in our church? Have a committee to uplift spirits and encourage the downhearted who carry the heavy burden of disability? The church asks that you volunteer for this much-needed committee in the Cathedral. Please call the church office at 212 288-3215