Next week’s International Day of People with Disability is a chance for Catholic communities to celebrate the lives, achievements and contributions of 4.4 million Australians with a disability, says Bishop Don Sproxton. Source: ACBC Media Blog.
The international commemoration is held each year on December 3. Bishop Sproxton, the Bishop Delegate for Disability Issues, has written a message for the day that urges parishes to be a hospitable place for all.
“I encourage parish communities to continue to promote a welcoming attitude among their people to the person with disabilities,” he wrote.
“This is more than attending to issues of physical accessibility. Each person in the community needs to be accepted as a brother and sister.”
Bishop Sproxton, whose letter is titled “'Us’ not ‘Them’ – encouraging active participation”, cited comments from Pope Francis for last year’s International Day of People with Disability.
The Pope said the presence of a brother or sister with a disability will help the community “to develop attitudes and acts of solidarity, and service towards them and their families. Our aim should be to speak no longer about ‘them’, but rather about ‘us’”.
During the first general assembly of the Fifth Plenary Council of Australia, Bishop Sproxton spoke of the needs of people with a disability. He said the Church must “lead the way in our society with regard to all people with disabilities, who with their families, often find themselves on the margins”.
Access resources from the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference’s Office for Justice, Ecology and Peace.
Bishop: Celebrate the lives of people with disability (ACBC Media Blog)