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The Church & The Disabled: Acceptance, Inclusion and Participation

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BishopGeraldScott

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Christ, before He acsended into Heaven, commissioned the Church to go to all the world, baptizing and soul-winning... bringing to the lost the Good News of redemption and salvation. He wanted everyone, not just certain ones, to hear the Gospel and decide to repent and be born again.. living eternally with our Blessed Savior in Heaven. The Church has gone throughout the world with this message; but in most instances, it has failed to bring this message of love, hope and deliverance to those who need to hear it the most, i.e, people with disabilities; the physcially, developmentally and mentally challenged among us. In the past, and even, regretfully, today, the disabled have be excluded, ostracized, ignored and even mistreated by those who profess to be living a Christ-like life. Christ embraced and cared for everyone, with special concern for those that society had "kicked to the curb". As we anticipate a new and exciting year, let us, as the Body of Christ, take a new and exciting approach in including and earnestly accepting people with disabilities, whether severe, moderate or"mild", whether obvious or hidden,chronic or temporary.

Our attitudes and priorities must change.. and we must be prepared to deal with whatever disability a person may have, whether mobile, visual, audio (hearing challenges), developmental (down sydrome, cerebral palsy, autism, etc), stature (whether a large person or a little person) terminal (aids, malignant diseases, etc.), mental (neurological, such as epilepsy; and certain mental health disorders, such as paranoia, schizophrenia, and being bi-polar ). ALL MUST BE WELCOMED. Tonight's program is devoted to introducing believers, churches and other public and faith-based institutions to a better, more effective, and a morally correct way of interacting with people with disabilities and the divine mandate that requires us to do so.

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