As the Church continues the conversation with our generation in the current Synod, she is looking to improve the way we reach out to include people living with a disability.
Crux reported recently that several bishops have brought the concerns of people with disabilities to the official deliberations of the Synod, and that the discussions have addressed physical disabilities as well as invisible ones.
“A lot of disabilities are hidden, especially mental disabilities,” Archbishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney, Australia, told Crux. “There could be people battling with all sorts of things in their lives, even though they look to be very happy and complete.”
Sarah Yaklic directs Grotto Network and is in Rome leading our efforts to bring the Synod conversations home. “In my eyes, it is sad that those who are deaf and those living with disability are still on the margins,” she told Crux. “We as Church can and should do better in creating communities where all people are not only welcome but are invited to share their gifts and talents. This is why is it so important for Pope Francis and the Synod fathers to find a way to listen to young people living with a disability.
“I feel as though their voice is missing, and that’s a lost voice who could give witness to the power of Jesus’ love and the hope found in following him,” she said.
Grotto’s live conversation from Rome on Monday, Oct. 15, will be translated into American Sign Language so those who are deaf can participate. We’re still gathering thoughts and questions for that conversation from all corners — share your input before the event, and tune in on Monday at 3 p.m. EST to join the discussion and #RejuvenateTheChurch.