Parish Disability Resources

    two women and girl outside front door receiving lit candle from another woman  two men at front door with candle and gift on step

Open Minds, Open Hearts, Open Doors

Sometimes, the disability isn’t obvious, as in the case of some intellectual/developmental disabilities or mental illnesses. If you observe behavior that you don’t understand, it is good to remain aware for possible need of assistance and be nonjudgmental.

 Accessibility   wheelchair moving with words Wheelchair Accessible

Accessibility through Creativity Sometimes accessibility is a new way of thinking and sometimes involve little or no cost. (from NCPD)

Assess physical accessibility in your church building, including possible solutions.

  Creating Inclusion Accessible documents review and training is available for free from Easter Seals Iowa Assistive Technology staff at, 401 NE 66th Ave. in Des Moines, Iowa 50313.  Please call 1-866-866-8782 or 515-289-4069 (TTY) or email

Assistive Listening Devices            American Sign Language hand symbols with words Ministry to hearing impaired

Here are some resources discussing various types of Assistive Listening Devices that work with hearing aid types.  Hopefully this will assist in evaluating needs and what should be considered when choosing a type of Assistive Listening Device for your parish.

Awareness and Welcoming boy and girl shaking hands

  • Inclusion Tip/Fact Sheets on disabilities and related issues for inclusive parish life.
    Child of God

Autism at Mass-Mass Without Tears

  Compound Caregivers

  Feeling Comfortable with People with Disabilities

  Inclusion: Happy Kids for Christmas

  Mental Illness Stigma--What Would I do?

  Ministering to Difficult People

Pastoral Visits with Someone with Dementia

  Postpartum Depression

  Prenatal Diagnoses and Pro-Life Choices

  Siblings of Children with Disabilities

  Suicide Prevention Inclusion Tip Sheet/The Key to Suicide Prevention: Knowledge

  Supporting Parishioners with Mental Illness

  The Blessings of Autism

Caregiver Resources

Catholic Caregivers is a program of the Friends of St. John the Caregiver. We provide information and material to help those who support and work with caregivers.  All the material and resources we offer are free.  We do ask that you keep the Friends of St. John the Caregiver copyright on any material that's distributed.

Nourish for Caregivers is is a 501(c)(3) Nonprofit Created to improve the health and spiritual well-being of family caregivers...we provide faith-based programs and resources to churches and organizations to support caregivers.   Our mission is to equip churches to create a spiritual home that ministers to the practical, emotional and spiritual needs of caregivers, giving them the tools and resources to help caregivers connect with their faith and encounter Christ, so that they can see the grace and blessings in their caregiver journey.

Nourish for Caregivers is a complete turnkey curriculum with all of the resources and tools needed to successfully implement an ongoing program for family caregivers.  The Christ-centered materials focus on issues common to all caregivers, covering twelve (12) topics. Included are curriculum that cover subjects such as:
  • The Caregiver Role and Decisions You Face
  • Managing Family Dynamics
  • Coping with Stress
  • The Spirituality of Asking For Help
  • End-of-Life Issues

We have three models available flexible to the specific needs of your organization: Traditional Model, Virtual/Hybrid Model and Healthcare Model. Read more about each program on their website.

COVID19 Resources

Disability Book Resources 

List of Books available to check out from the diocese pastoral center, contact Patty Origer, 515-237-5073 or email

Grief Support Resources

Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) experience loss and grieve for lost loved ones, just like everyone does.  When that person has a hard time communicating how they feel or processing complicated emotions, it makes it more difficult.  I Love You-When Someone you Love Dies and Healing the Hurt is a resource to assist these individuals in their grief

Mental Health Resources group of people, boy using wheelchair, man with cane, child standing, women holding child up high in arms

Picture Missals

Listed below are several examples of Picture Missals that could be utilized as an example and adapted with pictures for your own parish.

My Mass Book A Picture Missal Print from Archdiocese of Newark

Picture Missal from St. Francis of Assisi Parish in West Des Moines, IA

Returning to Mass Safely picture communication tool

We go to Mass Picture Schedule from Archdiocese of Newark