Lift Up Your Hearts

You may have read in this summer’s issue of our Saint Louise Herald about the newly formed Disability Awareness Committee. In short, the committee has grown out of a concern to reach out to those among us who have a special need or a disability so that all are truly welcomed to participate more fully at Mass and in our parish life. Individuals needs vary, and so many long time parishioners are shy to ask about finding ways to accommodate them. Our committee members want to help make all of our parish community more aware of the ways in which we are able to accommodate many special needs, and want to learn about how we might be able to offer more assistance. I’m certainly concerned that our parishioners feel free to ask about what we might be able to do to meet their, or their family members’ needs. But there are a number things we already do which many are not aware of.

Did you know, for example, that we are able to offer a very low gluten host (with only a small trace amount of gluten) for Holy Communion at Mass. Most of our parishioners with a gluten sensitivity tolerate these hosts well. Individuals with this particular need are welcomed to stop in the church sacristy before Mass to inquire and learn about our procedure. We’ve also made additional efforts to provide more reserved handicapped parking spaces close to the main entrance of church for our weekend Masses, and currently we’re expecting an order of pew signs to better indicate where handicap seating is available throughout church. Conversations which our committee members have had with parishioners and other concerned individuals have prompted some of these actions, and lead to planning some exciting new projects, such as an enhancement to our sound system to assist those with hearing aids.

At our 12:30pm Mass this Sunday we are taking the opportunity to celebrate a Disabilities Awareness Mass, hosted by members of our parish Disability Awareness Committee. The Committee invites all parishioners, but especially those who might be looking for some support or have questions about a personal special need to join them at Mass, and at a reception immediately following at LeGras Hall. Of course, any parishioner who would like to discuss a need or concern is always welcomed to contact our committee through the parish office.

Yours In Christ,
Fr. Joe

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