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Faith and Disability

It is important for churches to be disability-friendly in order to attract more people. It’s even considered good manners, in general, to keep disabled people in mind when you’re making plans. Services that are held outdoors should be near an accessible entrance or they should be reasonably close to an accessible route. Services that are held indoors need wheelchair ramps, toilets with grab bars, and wide doors. In order to be loud enough for all your parishioners to hear the service requires a certain amount of planning. There should be a loop system for those who are hard of hearing and there should be some kind of amplification system. It’s also important to make sure that the front entrance is level with the sidewalk or you can install wheelchair ramps into the parking lot.

Disabled parking spaces should be designated and marked with a sign that is mounted high enough to be visible from a distance. It’s best if you can keep your church building in good repair, too, because a disabled person might need to visit a church that they haven’t used before, or they might be going for the first time. If you want a disabled person to show up at your church, give them something good to hear when they get there. There should be handicapped parking spaces near the entrance and it would be nice if their path to the door was well-lit or if someone greets them with a friendly smile.