At its February 2014 meeting, the Christian Reformed Church’s Board of Trustees adopted a broadened mandate for the Disability Concerns ministry of the church.
The old mandate focused on specific tasks for the office, including gathering and disseminating information, increasing awareness in the church of special needs of people with disabilities, and helping churches eliminate barriers for full participation of those persons.
The new mandate reads as follows:
The Office of Disability Concerns strives to promote and foster relationships, communities, and societies where everybody belongs and everybody serves by assisting churches, agencies, institutions, and leadership within the Reformed Church in America and the Christian Reformed Church in North America.
The grounds for adopting the new mandate point out that the old mandate was narrow, leaving those involved in the ministry asking if there are things they should be doing that aren’t included in the mandate.
“The old mandate, approved in 2000, specified various ways that we are to work, much of it in programmatic language,” said Disability Concerns director Mark Stephenson. “By not defining specific programming, the new mandate is both shorter and clearer.”
The new mandate also notes that Disability Concerns is a joint ministry of the CRC and the Reformed Church in America.
Disability Concerns (crcna.org)
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Disability Awareness Crosses Language Lines (The Banner)
Let’s End Disability Discrimination in Church (The Banner)