The following information comes from the Church Newsroom.
Utah native and member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Quinn Price has been completely blind since the age of two. But he says he feels empowered to participate fully in the gospel because of the many online resources especially geared from those with disabilities that the Church has provided (available on ChurchofJesusChrist.org and through the Gospel Library app).
One of the ways Price most often uses the Gospel Library app is in finding Church materials that are available in electronic braille. Having this resource helps him feel like he can “more efficiently contribute as a member of the Church.”
“Long before I was born it was possible for blind people to access all kinds of Church materials,” Price said. “However, I am confident that it wasn’t nearly so easy. These resources have been an incredible help to my personal gospel education, as well as have helped prepare me to teach classes and give talks in Church.”
Recent efforts in building out and populating Disabilities.ChurchofJesusChrist.org with necessary resources for those with physical, mental, and emotional needs are but the next step in the Church’s long history of trying to extend its reach beyond the barriers that may exist for people.
The site implements sections that relate to certain groups of people and specific topics. For example:
- Parents and Caregivers
- Leaders and Teachers
- Teaching Strategies for Children with Disabilities
- Policies and Guidelines
- Teachings and Doctrine
- Additional Resources
- Accessible Formats
According to the Church Newsroom:
Sections may contain scriptures, quotes from Church leaders, teaching tools, frequently asked questions and videos to provide hope, faith and enlightenment to all who either have a disability themselves or to those who have a personal relationship with someone with a disability.
Katie Steed, disability specialist manager for the Church, said the Disabilities.ChurchofJesushrist.org website helps the Church accomplish its vision, which is to “help members with disabilities and their families belong, contribute and progress.” Instead of focusing on the needs of most Church members, Steed said she and her team put all their efforts into addressing the needs of “the one.” This means addressing the needs of more individuals than people might think, she explained.
Steed said the United States’ most recent census determined 19.6% of the population has a disability. “So, if we translate that into our worldwide Church member numbers,” Steed continued, “it would be about one in five Church members who has a disability.”
Through its website and app resources, the Church hopes to assist not just those with a disability, but also Church leaders, parents and others with tools, resources and materials that will uplift and spiritually enlighten all.
To read more about these resources on the Church Newsroom, CLICK HERE.