Anabaptist Disabilities Network (ADNet) has appointed Rebekah Flores of Elgin, Ill., and Ronald Ropp of Normal, Ill., to serve as field associates. Flores is an active participant at Highland Avenue Church of the Brethren in Elgin.
The deadline is drawing near for nominations for the 2014 Open Roof Awards, presented annually to a congregation or district in the Church of the Brethren that has made great strides in becoming accessible to people with disabilities and offering opportunities for them to serve.
The first event of International Cane Awareness Day in Vietnam occurred in October 2011, at Nguyen Dinh Chieu Blind School, Ho Chi Minh City. An overall theme was chosen for this event: “The white-tipped cane is an adaptive, functional cane used by blind persons, which alerts people to give priority to the person using the cane.”
On Sept. 3, 2013, the Ho Chi Minh City University of Social Sciences and Humanities (USSH) Faculty of Social Work received boxes containing the first 1,000 copies of the Vietnamese translation of “Coping with Physical Loss and Disability Workbook,” written by Rick Ritter, M.S.W., who has been part of Lincolnshire Church of the Brethren in Indiana. The book was published by Youth Publisher, Ho Chi Minh City.
The Church of the Brethren has begun a formal partnership with ADNet, the Anabaptist Disabilities Network. Based out of Elkhart, Ind., ADNet is a strong voice for disabilities and mental health advocacy both within the Mennonite Church USA and ecumenically. The good work they have done and their clear passion for this ministry recently led the Church of the Brethren’s Congregational Life Ministries to develop this partnership.
The Open Roof Award is presented each year to congregations who have made specific efforts to “ensure that all may worship, serve, be served, learn, and grow in the presence of God, as valued members of the Christian community.”
Three churches were chosen to receive the annual Open Roof Award, presented Saturday during the Mission and Ministry Board meeting. The award recognizes Church of the Brethren congregations or districts that have made great strides in becoming more accessible to people with disabilities.
This story of a visit to the Warming House, a school for 30 blind students in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, is written by Nguyen to Duc Linh. She is personal assistant to Grace Mishler, a program volunteer working in Vietnam through the Church of the Brethren Global Mission and Service. This article is edited with help from Betty Kelsey, a member of Mishler’s Mission Support Team.
This interview with Grace Mishler, Brethren member serving in Vietnam with support from the denomination’s Global Mission and Service office, is by Vietnamese journalist Löu Vaên Ñaït. It originally appeared Nov. 15, 2011, in English in the “Vietnam News Outlook” social section. The visually impaired struggle to be more independent by using a white cane that allows them to better integrate into society. “With my cane, I feel more independent in Vieät Nam. It’s my best friend here,” says American Grace Mishler, who works as a consultant at the HCM City University of Social Sciences and Humanities.
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