Friday, July 29, 2011

Access Applied? The Ecclesiastical Version

St. Anonymous has a new pastor. Dr. J is the extravert's extravert. She preached part of her first sermon standing on a ladder (something to do with perspective). We went to the welcome luncheon for her a few weeks ago, but in addition, she wanted to meet with church members in small groups. Last night we were part of a group meeting with her in the sanctuary.

Dr. J had three questions to ask us. The first was what we would like to see stay the same about St. Anonymous. The second was what we would like to see change about St. Anonymous. The third was how can we get people closer to Jesus.

I sat patiently through question number one. Before she had question two completely out her of mouth, I jumped in and said, "I am so glad you asked that question. I want to see St. Anonymous become wheelchair accessible."

As I outlined the barriers to accessibility that now exist and my arguments for at least installing automatic door openers, a gentleman toward my right, who has Parkinson's Disease, chimed in his agreement. "Those doors are too heavy for me to open." Dr. J took notes. She agreed when I pointed out that it's hard for people to feel welcomed if they can't get in the door.

The notes are for the article she will write for the St. Anonymous newsletter summarizing the ideas from her nine group meetings. I guess my idea will be buried in there somewhere. Whether anything will come of it, I cannot say. What I promised myself is that I would bring the issue up in an appropriate forum, and I've done that. I'll wait and see what the next move should be.

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