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True inclusion isn’t noticing someone for their differences. ​ It is noticing when they are missing.

In answering Pope Francis’ call the St. James Cathedral’s new Faith Friend program will be a unique blend of children’s faith formation program and an inclusion ministry. The program's goal is to give children of all-abilities, ages 7-18, with diagnosed physical, cognitive and intellectual differences access to parish community, social events, and faith formation. A unique aspect of the Faith Friends program is the Faith Peer program. Faith Peers are youth and young adults who have chosen to live out their discipleship and share some of their personal time in dedication and service to the goals of the program.

 Pope Francis on December 2020 in his response to the United Nations Theme for the World Day of Persons with Disabilities  - “Building Back Better: Toward Disability Inclusive, Accessible and Sustainable post-COVID-19 World” - Urged us to  Build Back Better: in reflecting upon the Gospel of the house built on rock vs. sand, he urged us to rebuild back stronger on top of the rocks of Inclusion and Participation.  Also, the Archdiocesan Pastoral Plan urges us to Encounter Christ, Accompany Each Other, and Live the Gospel.  In Faith Friends Ministry we believe "the heart of every culture is its approach to the greatest mystery."  We can’t sit by while individuals of all-abilities are deprived of the opportunity to approach and participate in the mystery of our faith.

St. James Cathedral's Faith Friends program is a unique blend of our Faith Mentor faith formation program and parish youth inclusion ministry. The program's goal is to give children ages 7-18* with physical, cognitive and intellectual disabilities access to parish community, social events, and faith formation. Our program generally runs through the school year from September through June. Features of our program include:

  • Sunday Friends: Twice Monthly Inclusive Social and Community Activities
  • Teen Time: Saturday afternoon once every other month. Teen only activities.
  • Birthday Club: Celebrate your birthday with Faith Friends!(Every other month)
  • Faith Mentors: Opportunity for one-to-one faith formation and/or Sacramental Preparation for each Faith Friend, allowing them to thrive at their own level, instruction provided by a Faith Mentor with lots of training and support.
  • Faith Friends are invited, encouraged, and accompanied in their participation in activities in St. James Children's Faith Formation, Youth Ministry and other parish-wide events, liturgical celebrations appropriate to their needs and abilities.
  • Parent/Caregiver respite time.

For more information please email Jennifer Wong or visit our program link at https://stjames-faithfriends.weebly.com/

*Faith Friends older than 18 are welcome, there may be an additional intake process

 
 




 

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804 Ninth Avenue
Seattle, Washington  98104
Phone 206.622.3559  Fax 206.622.5303