The Corps Mission department recently hosted a series of webinars featuring Major Dr. Catherine Spiller, Academic Dean at Eva Burrows College of The Salvation Army Australia Territory. She shared her knowledge and experience of caring for and serving those with disabilities. Participants learned how to create a welcoming and safe environment that helps all worshippers to fully participate.

It is particularly important to learn from those with lived experiences. The Corps Life department is eager to work with our corps to learn how we can create spaces where all worshippers can fully participate in the presence of the Holy Spirit. This month, we invite you to check out Major Shelley Kerr's review of Beyond Saints and Superheroes: Supporting Parents Raising Children with Disabilities. The book is an eight-week guide on practical ways that faith communities can support families affected by disability written by those with lived experiences. Major Shelley Kerr is the Territorial Disability Ally & Anti-Ablesim Consultant.

Having just finished reading Beyond Saints and Superheroes: Supporting Parents Raising Children with Disabilities, my first thought is one of appreciation. Canadian publications and statistics are challenging to obtain. A snapshot of these statistics and their sources can be found on pages 18 & 19 of the book and the Disability Resource page on our Corps Life website.

Published after COVID-19, this Canadian resource is truly a practical guide for faith communities. Authors Laura MacGregor and Allen G. Jorgenson along with illustrator Wendy Newbery invite us into a space where we can hear the voices of lived experiences. These voices share their journeys through the numerous barriers they face yet you will hear from their hearts how they desire to connect or stay connected with a faith community. Their stories are augmented with art and poetry that invokes a deeper response within me.

his can be done as an eight-week personal or group study. Although I read through the book personally, I now desire to go through it in a group study with fellow members of my faith community. I believe this exercise can transform faith communities into places of belonging for all.

Major Shelley Kerr
Territorial Disability Ally & Anti-Ablesim Consultant.

Click here to purchase the book