Liturgy for Disability Sunday

Liturgy for Disability Sunday (3rd Sunday in June)

disability awareness
Call to worship
To the God who walks on wounded feet
and heals with wounded hands,
To the God who stands beside us wounded,
all knowing and all loving,
To the God of imperfections
We offer our imperfect praise,
Trusting in the perfect love of the God
who knows what it is to be truly human.

WOV 10 – All people that on earth do dwell …

Prayer of approach
God of pain and God of peace, Mother and Father of us all,
Created in your image we inherited what makes us human,
The ability to think, communicate, reflect, record and create.
These gifts are precious and we give you thanks.
Though we have gifts in common, we are not all alike,
Each of us is a different individual, unique and special,
We come before you rejoicing in difference.
We come before you knowing each child is given a different blend
of gifts and experiences, that shape, and keep shaping the adult.
Every person in your world is differently abled,
Every person in your world is differently disabled
Help each of use what we can to enhance our lives and your world.  Amen

WOV 558 – When I needed a neighbour, were you there …

Bible Reading – Reflection from ‘Oh Light’ – God’s economy (p.9)
Bible Reading – Reflection from ‘Oh Light’ – If a cure were found (p. 27)

Alleluia Aotearoa 158 – Who is my mother, who is my brother … Murray/Render

Reflection: (Given by a person with disabilities – sharing frustrations, passions and achievements)

Promotion of ‘Creating Welcoming Churches’ (a handbook on inclusion – catering for disabled persons at services and on church property produced by the Disability, Spiritual and Faith Network with funding from Presbyterian Women and Methodist Women’s Fellowship)

God, help us to know the truth of your love in our lives;
Enable us to grow in the grace we need
to be agents of change for a better world.
We dedicate ourselves and our gifts to your service.  Amen.

Prayer of intercession
God of our yesterdays
and God of our tomorrows
We ask that you be with us now,
God of our today.

God of Vision and New Possibilities
open our hearts and minds to the reality of your presence.
God of Light illuminate the dark places of our lives.
We are not perfect people.
Come through the cracks of our imperfections
and fill us with your light.

We pray for all marginalised people.
Those who suffer discrimination because of: gender, race,
sexual orientation, physical or mental impairment.
Give them strength and belief in their worth.
We pray for those active in discrimination,
and those who allow it to happen.
May they know what they do.
May they understand the hurts they cause.

We gather our thoughts in this sacred place
knowing that you have heard each sincere desire.
We long for a time when all people are valued.
May our unconditional love flow from us to others
May it swirl and curl through this year
embracing all who seek a better life.  Amen

Hope is Our Song 16 – Christians are all kinds of people … Stan Stewart

With your help O God:

We reject victim mentality – we will live as survivors
We will do the best we can – we will be people of faith.

For the God who walks on wounded feet
and heals with wounded hands,
For the God who stands beside us wounded,
all knowing and all loving,
For the God of imperfections,
We go into our wonderful and imperfect world
to reflect God’s perfect love,
and in so doing, claim what it is to be truly human.

Sung Amen

Prepared by Rosalie Sugrue

Liturgy for Disability Awareness Sunday

Liturgy for Disability Sunday (3rd Sunday in June) – by Rosalie Sugrue

Call to worship

To the God who walks on wounded feet
and heals with wounded hands,
To the God who stands beside us wounded,
all knowing and all loving,
To the God of imperfections
We offer our imperfect praise,
Trusting in the perfect love of the God
who knows what it is to be truly human.  …


The complete liturgy is available here.


disability-awareness 02

Disability Awareness Sunday

disability awarenessIn New Zealand, Disability Awareness Sunday (DAS) is observed on the third Sunday in June.  This year it will be held on 17 June.

It is an opportunity to be intentional about disability awareness and is a great way to educate your church. It is not just about raising awareness, but celebrating and encouraging people with disabilities in their gifts and ministries.

The Elevate Christian Disability Trust has a number of resources available on their website – just click here and scroll down the page …

While there, check out other pages on their site – it contains a lot of information about the Trust and the work it does.


Disability Sunday resources

Rosalie Sugrue has provided some more resources for Disability Sunday, comprised of poems, prayers, and a children’s story written by her self and another Kiwi writer, Trish Harris, and included in a new book issued last year entitled A Child Laughs: Prayers for Peace and Justice.

Unfortunately we cannot include all the material here, but we can provide you with a pdf here. 


A personal prayer/poem


I don’t notice your disability anymore. …. It’s

just something you carry with you, she said.
I carry it with me
like a handbag
swinging loosely by my side
        pick it up
        put it down.
A handbag
I never lose
and never replace.

I carry it on me
like a cotton shirt
on a summers day.
Wind easing its finger
between skin and fabric
billowing it out
pulling it too
playing at separation
but the buttons hold tight.

I carry it in me
carved deep
by a river
always in flood.

I carry it through me
like the weight
of a name
for a child never born.
A presence
and an absence.

I carry it  with me
        on me
        in me
and through me.

I am the carrier

and I am also
the carried.

A blue tear
filled with gold.


Public Prayers   (Approach)

Loving God,
We acknowledge that regardless of health,
attitude, appearance or status,
we are people marred by imperfections.
Grant us the strength to manage our infirmities
with wise caring, good humour, and gratitude.
Help us use whatever we have to become
more insightful to the conditions of humans,
and more attentive to matters spiritual.
Save us from falling victim to self-centredness
         – a malaise that preys on the fit and the unfit
that left unchecked is more soul destroying
and more binding than any physical aberration.
In the loving of others may we find perfection.  Amen.


A story for children of all ages

The Tiny Town of Tontevoc

The tiny town of Tontevoc nestled in a sunny valley beside a sparkling river.  It was surrounded by green fields backed by snow capped mountains.  Everyone lived in a warm house and no one went short of anything they needed.  Instead of enjoying the good things they had the children of Tontevoc School were discontent.  Each child thought some other child was more fortunate.

One child owned a pony and another had a magnificent tree house.  There was a girl who could run like the wind.  Her brother could sing like angel.  Their cousins were exceptional at tennis.  There were twins who looked alike and often argued.  A boy who painted beautiful pictures lived with his grandmother.  The family of four played boisterous games and got to sleep in bunks.  The cleverest girl in the school wore thick glasses.  Her sister was very pretty.  One child lived in a grand house and had many toys.  And, there was a boy who limped and had to use a crutch.

One day the Wise-woman of Tontevoc visited the school holding a bunch of floating balloons.  … [See page 4 of the pdf file for more …]


July – Bible Month

Bible 01July is Bible month in New Zealand, and Rosalie Surgue has written a liturgy which can be used to celebrate this event – including a little something to get the grey cells a-tingling!  The liturgy can be found on our page of resources for the Church Year.

Incidentally, the material for Disability Sunday has now been relocated to the Church Year page.

But wait,  there’s more!  Joy Kingsbury-Aitken has provided some Prayers for Pentecost, and this resource is also available on the Church Year page.