For Jews with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) communal worship can be exceedingly difficult, if not downright impossible. Here are some ways that congregations can be more accessible to those with MCS. From Reform Judaism magazine, Summer 2004.
Suggestions for helping synagogue communities become more welcoming and responsive to families with children with special needs by Dona Hare, Director of the Mitzvah Corp Program at Kutz Leadership Camp
The Winter 2011 issue of this publication for Jewish educators provides articles from educators, professionals, and lay leaders from all around the Reform Movement, each addressing the topic of creating an atmosphere of inclusion in all aspects of Jewish learning.
JDAM Reads for Children! presents practical ideas for raising awareness of disabilities and encouraging tikkun
olam using the picture book Jumping Jenny. Also includes information for a webinar featuring the book's author.
Praying with Lior asks whether someone with Down syndrome can be a "spiritual genius." As this moving and entertaining documentary moves to its climax, Lior must pass through the gateway to manhood - his Bar Mitzvah.
Profiles of four families struggling to meet the material and spiritual needs of children and siblings with mental and physical disabilities -- now and in the future. From Reform Judaism magazine, Summer 2002.
In his Yom Kippur sermon, Rabbi Kipnes addresses the "veil of silence" and the discomfort people feel around mental illness. He offers a charge to lift up the veil, and not be afraid to talk about mental illnesses and to acknowledge that they, too, are in need of healing.
Through Jewish texts, Dr. William Cutter initiates a conversation of the tension between inclusivity and feeling estranged during a conference in 2001 at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion.
Rabbi Lynne F. Landsberg talks about third annual Jewish Disability Awareness Month, an opportunity for Jewish communities to break down physical, communicative and attitudinal barriers, educate ourselves on what accessibility and inclusion really mean, and reach out to Jews with disabilities.
Learn about the people and stories that make Bet Shalom Congregation in Minnetonka, MN an inclusive, welcoming environment, in the video below.
Caring Community Specialist Rabbi Richard F. Address discusses how congregations can and are adapting to welcome those with special needs and disabilities. Watch the video below or listen to the Podcast: