10 Tips for Belonging
- One of the most important steps to becoming a renewed, vibrant community of faith is to create a sense of belonging for each member. Learn the stages of belonging so you can ensure belonging extends to individuals of all abilities and their families.
Reflecting on Belonging
- Belonging entails more than being present. It involves the efforts of everyone in the community to invite, welcome, accept, know and befriend individuals of all abilities. List the action steps your faith community can take to ensure every individual experiences true belonging.
- Some good ideas used by congregations and religious schools to welcome individuals of all abilities in the area of belonging.
TEAM Belong Video Training
- Watch the five part training and use the four handouts to learn about the many ways your faith community can move beyond inclusion to belonging for individuals of all abilities.
Jesus Is Our Model for Creating Belonging
Jesus Creates Belonging for People of All Abilities
Listen to part two of the That Every Ability May Belong Video Training to see how Jesus made proximity to and solidarity with people with disabilities a priority in his ministry.
The Ministry of Jesus as a Model for TEAM Belong
- Explore the Gospel accounts that illustrate how Jesus made proximity to, respect for and solidarity with people with disabilities a priority in His ministry.
- Help Ministry Leaders make belonging for individuals of all abilities a priority with this audit.
The 4D Approach
- Change attitudes and raise comfort levels so we minister alongside people with differences as co-laborers.
Know Your Disability Etiquette
- Know your disability etiquette so everyone in your community of faith has the knowledge and confidence to interact comfortably with people who happen to have disabilities.
- Some good ideas used by congregations and religious schools to welcome individuals of all abilities and their families in the area of affirmation.
10 Tips for Affirmation
- 10 ways to welcome individuals of all abilities in the area of affirmation.
How You Can Make a Difference
- Educate your congregation about the many things they can do to create belonging for individuals of all abilities with this bulletin insert.
Survey of Needs
- Find out what accommodations are needed.
Mental Health Ministry
- Tips to minister to individuals with mental health concerns.
- Some good ideas used by congregations to welcome individuals of all abilities and their families in the area of communication.
10 Tips for Communication
- 10 ways to welcome individuals of all abilities in the area of communication.
People First Language
- Use "People First Language" to promote dignity and respect for individuals of all abilities.
Additional Communication Resources
- Resources for large print missalettes, assistive listening devices, sign language interpreters and access symbols.
Know What Accessibility Truly Means
Listen to part three of the That Every Ability May Belong Video Training to understand how to create an accessible environment.
- Ideas to make the physical structure of your buildings more accessible.
10 Tips for Accessibility
- 10 ways to welcome individuals of all abilities in the area of accessibility.
Accessibility Plan Worksheet
- Use this worksheet to draw up your plan to create accessibility.
Accessibility Audit for Ministries
- Require ministry leaders to complete this audit so that accessibility is a priority for everyone.
- Learn the correct way to construct ramps, passenger drop off areas and accessible parking spaces.
- Use this helpful survey to do a walk-through of your campus to evaluate your accessibility.
Making Events Accessible
- Ensure that individuals of all abilities can participate in events with these suggestions.
- Use access symbols on signage, websites, brochures, and ads so that individuals of all abilities and their families know they are welcome.
Blessing for a New Access Feature
- Use this blessing to celebrate your efforts to create access with ramps, elevators, assistive listening devices etc.
For Religious Educators
Different Gifts, Same Spirit Lesson Plans
Use the Different Gifts, Same Spirit lesson plan series to teach elementary, junior high, and high school students how to welcome students and parishioners of all abilities.
Available in booklet format from Loyola Press or download a free version:
- Director's Guide
- Family Guide
- Intermediate Student Guide
- Intermediate Catechist Guide
- Junior High Student Guide
- Junior High Catechist Guide
- High School Student Guide
- High School Catechist Guide
Principals, Directors of Religious Education and teachers can prepare themselves to teach the Different Gifts Same Spirit lesson plans by watching the That Every Ability May Belong Video Training.
The following series of educational items can be used in bulletins, on websites, or in newsletters to help raise awareness about how each of us can play a part in creating belonging for individuals of all abilities.
Right-click and select "Save image as…" to save the file to your computer.
Resources for TEAM Belong Month
Please join us in celebrating That Every Ability May Belong Month! Set aside time to reflect on, educate about and celebrate creating belonging for individuals of all abilities in our communities of faith. The following resources were designed to encourage your participation!
That Every Ability May Belong Month Workbooks
• Roman Catholic TEAM Belong Month Workbook
• Greek Orthodox TEAM Belong Month Workbook
• Protestant TEAM Belong Month Workbook
• Episcopal Team Belong Moth Workbook
• Jewish TEAM Belong Month Workbook (February is Jewish Disability Awareness, Acceptance & Inclusion Month)
Family Guide: Involving Children in TEAM Belong Month
- Congregations are granted permission to use the original song “Open Doors” in perpetuity.
Resources to Start a TEAM Belong Ministry
Use the following resources to recruit and train a group of dedicated individuals to survey, train and transform your faith community into a place where individuals of every ability belong.
- Organizing a TEAM Belong Ministry
- What Does a TEAM Belong Minister Do?
- Roman Catholic TEAM Belong Ministry Handbook
- That Every Ability May Belong Video Training
- Commissioning Ceremony for TEAM Belong Ministry Team
- See resources posted on the Getting Started Page
Read an examination of the theological framework of Father Henri Nouwen's Vulnerable Journey by now Bishop Robert Barron and experience a trip to the Holy Land for persons of all abilities led by Father Donald Senior.
Opening Hearts, Minds and Doors: Embodying the Inclusive and Vulnerable Love of God