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Neurodiversity & the Church

NOTE: This is an online only gathering.  On the first Sunday of each month, we’ll meet in person in Birmingham City Centre (and livestream our gathering). The rest of the month we meet online. 

On Sunday, 13th June our own David Derbyshire is going to help us consider the theme of neurodiversity and the church, drawing on his own autism story. This is one of multiple conversations exploring the various nuances of this topic that we will hold over the coming months.

This is part of our new series looking at the practice of inclusion and what it does/ can look like in a variety of areas of life and faith. The clue is in the name, but we see inclusion as a core part of our spirituality and our justice-seeking as a community.

We’ll reconvene on Zoom for further discussion at 5:15. You will need to be logged into a Zoom account with a public account name in order to access this Zoom. (Meeting ID: 853 6699 5635, Passcode: 123674).

Welcome (Danielle)

Song – Who You Say I Am (IGB Band)

Question for Sharing (Pamela):  Is there a place or a food or a smell that makes you feel at home, relaxed or at ease? 

Prayer (Lin)

You, the one
From whom on different paths
All of us have come.

To whom on different paths
All of us are going.
Make strong in our hearts what unites us;
Build bridges across all that divides us;
United make us rejoice in our diversity.
And at one in our witness to your peace,
A rainbow to your glory.

Written by David Steindl-Rast OSB

Scripture Reading (Nettes):  1 Corinthians 12:12, 21-27

12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. 13 Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles,[a] some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit…

21 The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.”

22 In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary. 23 And the parts we regard as less honourable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen, 24 while the more honourable parts do not require this special care. So God has put the body together such that extra honour and care are given to those parts that have less dignity. 25 This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other. 26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honoured, all the parts are glad. 27 All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.

Reflection (David): Neurodiversity & the Church

Song (Ali): You Say

Love Feast (Danielle)  – Walk to Emaus (Luke 24)

Prayer

God of fresh starts,
of new beginnings,
of renewal and restoration,
We awake to your grace,
embraced by love unconditional.
With each morning
You birth new possibilities
in us; around us.
We are surrounded by sacred potential.
There are so many ways to love.
May we rise to the day’s call
To listen for the aches
To give voice to the beauty
To be a companion to justice.
For the morning, enfleshed
(Written by Rev. M. Barclay)

Song (Ali & Ellie) – Beautiful Things

What’s Coming up at IGB (Danielle)

Blessing: “May we live fully, love wastefully and have the courage to be all that God has created us to be.”

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About Inclusive Gathering Birmingham …

Inclusive Gathering Birmingham is a diverse church gathered together by a common dream: to become a truly inclusive faith community, where doubt and difference are a welcome part of our journey together toward Jesus. We believe that the way of Jesus leads us to the wild, radical idea that true spiritual community can be formed based on who is INCLUDED, not by who is EXCLUDED. We are a learning community, constantly growing and changing to live out this vision in new and expanding ways.

When we say “inclusion”, we mean much more than mere tolerance or welcome. We believe God wants us all to know that we actually belong. That means people of every race and ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity, age and background, HIV status, ability and disability, theological and political conviction are loved, invited, and fully included. Read more about what makes us tick at www.inclusivegathering.org.uk or send an email to newchurchbirmingham@gmail.com to ask questions or chat.

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