Do you know anybody in your church or community who is elderly or sight-impaired? An aging population is an issue facing almost every church and town in the United States. Church leaders face increasing challenges regarding how to share the Gospel with individuals who may be visually impaired.
Helping Christians with Vision Impairment
Many churches offer hearing assistance technology on their websites or in the pews. Very few churches advertise support for people who struggle with their vision even though there are approximately 300 million people in the world who are moderately or severely visually impaired, 95 percent of whom are unchurched. While there are many resources available within urban areas, rural communities can struggle to serve individuals who are losing their vision. This is especially true within rural areas with large numbers of senior living communities. It is in these small towns that Lutheran Braille Workers (LBW) can provide a significant amount of free assistance and outreach support.
What does LBW offer for free?
LBW offers free specialized large print, braille and audio materials for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, including the Bible, Lutheran Service Book, Small Catechism, devotionals, and other Christian materials. Churches and other organizations are invited to order these materials for free! These materials can be a great benefit to members of a church who are getting older, losing their vision, home-bound or otherwise not able to enjoy the same connection with the Word that used to. Pastors can use these resources to make house calls or hospital visits. Members of rural communities can use these materials during inclement weather when getting to church may not be a possibility.
For a complete listing of LBW’s free resources, visit lbwinc.org or call 800-925-6092. Please also visit LBW’s Facebook page: facebook.com/lutheranbrailleworkers.
Contributed through the LCMS Rural & Small Town Mission monthly newsletter by Daniel Jenkins, vice-president of Ministry Advancement, Lutheran Braille Workers
Upcoming RSTM Events…
Don’t forget that Rural & Small Town Mission provides free monthly webinars on topics important to congregations in town and country settings. Up next is Outreach Through Lutheran Braille Workers on May 23, followed by Witness & Outreach Resources on June 13. Find past webinars in our archive. Watch for information on all our upcoming events! Register for one of our Engaging Your Community or Engaging the Wandering events at lcms.org/rstm. These partner events offer practical resources and communication skills for reaching out to wandering members and our communities with Christ’s love. Join us in Waldport, Ore., on May 11 for an Engaging Your Community event. Online registration is available for both types of events. Contact your district or our office if you are interested in holding an event near you.
Register now for the 2019 National Rural & Small Town Mission Conference, Running With Endurance: Eyes Fixed On Jesus, Nov. 14–16 in Minneapolis. To see our calendar, visit lcms.org/rstm. Contact our office at 888-463-5127 or firstname.lastname@example.org.