Sunday, February 8, 2009

Autism Sunday

Autism Sunday – February 8, 2009
Advocates for those affected by autism are urging world leaders and church leaders around the globe to speak out on autism on Autism Sunday, the International Day of Prayer for those with autism spectrum disorders. Autism Sunday will take place on February 8, 2009.In preparation for Autism Sunday we have put together a list of resources that families and faith leaders may find helpful. In addition, there are some suggestions to create awareness and further celebrate this special day. Our hope is that all families affected by autism may be welcomed in their house of worship, and to become active participants in their faith community.

Ways to celebrate Autism Sunday Contact your faith leader to let them know about Autism Sunday. You may want to discuss the following possible suggestions for celebrating the day:
An announcement about Autism Sunday in their weekly bulletin or newsletter, giving attention to any special events planned for that day. Click here for a sample announcement.
Request that a special prayer be said during the service for families affected by autism
Offer to speak to the congregation about autism and to share your story
Ask your religious education leaders to include an activity about accepting people with disabilities into their classes. Click here for suggestions. Click here for a list of books to help children learn about autism.
Distribute information about autism and Autism Speaks. Click here.
Additional Suggestions
Wear your Autism Speaks blue puzzle pin. Visit the Autism Speaks store for the pin and more awareness items.
Invite members of your congregation to participate with you in fundraising events such as Walk Now for Autism. This is a great way to build support and enjoy an inspiring day out together.
Resources Click here to read Inclusion in Faith Communities: Some tips for Parents to Get Started Click here to read Guidelines for Clergy and Religious Educators for Conversations with Parents.Click here for a brief description of autism to present to faith leaders. For a listing of books, manuals and websites that focus on autism and faith communities visit our Resource Library, click here. Visit our Resource Guide to find special needs religious services and/or religious education classes in your area. We welcome new submissions to continually build the Resource Guide. If you know of additional special needs services or religious education classes please feel free to submit them here.

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