UCC Disabilities Ministries and UCC Mental Health Network
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (June 3, 2015)
Contacts: Rev. Alan Johnson, firstname.lastname@example.org or Rev. Susan Burns, email@example.com
The United Church of Christ Disabilities Ministries (UCCDM) and the United Church of Christ Mental Health Network (UCCMHN) are happy to announce that the fifth Widening the Welcome: Inclusion for All Conference will be held at the Hartford/Windsor Airport Marriott Hotel on September 24-26, 2015, in Hartford, CT. Registration information, including link to on-line registration is available now here:
Widening the Welcome 2015: Inclusion for All will celebrate the theme “Your gates shall always be open; day and night they shall not be shut.” (Isaiah 60: 11 NRSV) with speakers and workshops designed to assist congregations in welcoming and ministering with people with disabilities and/or mental health challenges. Keynote speakers include The Rev. Dr. Christina Jones Davis speaking on “The Journey Towards Inclusion,” and The Rev. Dr. Brett Webb-Mitchell speaking on “Inclusion 2.0: Envisioning What Comes Next.”
Workshops will include “Accessibility and Medical Issues,” “Accommodation and Accessibility in the Local Church,” “Any Body, Everybody, Christ’s Body: An Introduction,” “Breaking the Silence About Mental Illness, Family and Church,” “Caring for Individuals and Communities Affected by Trauma,” “Coming Out of the Basement: Understanding 12-Step Recovery and Seeking a Connection with God,” “Congregations and Suicide Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention,” “Disabilities and Mental Health 101,” “EDAN (Ecumenical Disability Advocacy Network),” Equipping for Effective Ministries with and to the Autism Community,” “A Pastor’s and Congregation’s Viewpoint of Working and Living Toward Inclusion,” “The Spiritual Art of Raising Children with Disabilities,” “Theology and Disability: Considering the Margins,” “WISE Up to Mental Health,” and “W.R.A.P (Wellness Recovery Action Plan.” There will also be special session featuring Valerie Tutson, “Sawubona. YEBO” (A Zulu Greeting), and Jin Hi Kim’s Cross-Cultural Music Meditation.
“Widening the Welcome: Inclusion for All” was termed “a movement within the movement” of the UCC by General Minister Geoffrey Black. UCCDM and UCCMHN welcome all UCC churches and conferences as well as our ecumenical partners seeking to do ministry with persons with disabilities and mental health challenges to send representatives to join us on September 24-26, 2015 for this fifth historic gathering. This is also the first of the four prior national conferences that will be held in the east so as to make it available to people in this region of our country.
For more information and registration visit the WtW web site at: Widening the Welcome Website
WtW is also on Facebook at: Widening the Welcome on Facebook
WtW event site can also be located at: Widening the Welcome Facebook Event Site
Photos from the 2011 WtW conference can be found at: Photos from the Widening the Welcome Conference 2011