One in seven people globally have a disability. They are the world’s largest minority group. Among them are some of the poorest, least educated, least employed, and most health-deprived. They are two to four times less likely to survive natural disasters than others. Most have not found their place in a local church.
In response, the Lausanne Disability Concerns Network is asking local church and Christian organizational leaders to include called and gifted young leaders with disabilities in church and organization leadership roles. Suggestions include: (1) Encourage a young person with a disability to use their gifts in church and to find their calling or vocation; (2) Invite a young person with a disability to work alongside you in a leadership role, providing mentorship and assistance as needed; and (3) Lead the way in placing called, gifted, and trained people with disabilities in local church and Christian organizational and leadership roles. Young leaders with disabilities can make a path in reaching and caring for the one in seven people who have disabilities. And they all will be a blessing to their local church or Christian organization. But we must first embrace the following:
We encourage church and mission leaders to think not only of mission among those with a disability, but to recognize, affirm and facilitate the missional calling of believers with disabilities themselves as part of the Body of Christ. The Cape Town Commitment II-B-4
The Lausanne Disability Concerns Network is committed to strengthening and multiplying disability leaders globally.