April 23 has been appointed by the Seventh-day Adventist church as the global Special Need day.
Since the worldwide constituency assembly in July 2015, in San Antonio, Texas, USA, the Adventists included in their large spectrum of ministries also the Special need one.
“At the heart of the Adventist initiative for Special Needs Ministries” said Larry Evans, Assistant to the President for the Special Needs Ministries at the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists “is the desire to assure those with special needs that ALL are gifted, needed, treasured and loved.”
These ministries include ministries for the blind, those with physical and mental limitations and the orphans of the world.
This day for Special Needs people has the purpose to remind to the global church the value and dignity of those with disabilities. They have to feel accepted despite their special needs. “Individuals are known for what they can do and not for what they cannot do”, declared Evans.
There millions of people with disabilities around the world. Nobody can ignore this reality. “We have to be involved in a process of education - to accept and be accepted, encouragement, involvement etc. It is not only an emotional response to the informal request of this people, but also a way to highlight their gifts and strength. We want them to enjoy the beauty of life”, so Corrado Cozzi, Adventists Inter-European Region Deaf liaison.
This is what happened in Romania, thanks to the many activities of the ‘Rise and Walk’ leadership, an association with the purpose “to be the eye of the blind, the ears of the Deaf, the legs of the lame, … the vitality for those who are limited by their disabilities”.
“We recently opened the subsidiary Arad, in Romania, and we had a great surprise” said George Uba, President of the ‘Rise and Walk’ Association. “At the meeting there were 53 persons with disabilities. Almost half of them are deaf-mute.”
Can you imagine the happiness of these people knowing that also in their city, as in almost 40 other cities in Romania, they can meet friends and share a feeling of ownership of their life, without prying eyes that look at you with undisguised pity?
There are more than 1 billion people with disabilities in the world, coping every day with the difficulties of life - difficulties very often created by the ignorance of a society that prioritizes perfection.
Tomorrow, April 23, to all these Special Need People the Worldwide Seventh-day Adventist church will say, with one voice: “We love you!”