Thursday, 14 May 2009

Hearing the Good News

Catholic Deaf Awareness week happens from 9 – 16 May. Many events will be taking place around the country to highlight not only the inclusion of people who are Deaf, Deafblind and Hard of Hearing but also their skills and energies and what they can bring to Parish and Diocesan life.

In Arundel & Brighton we have a Pastoral Service for Care of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. They will be celebrating a Signed Mass on Saturday 6th June in Horsham. If you want to find out more about this Mass and the service in general and how to get involved then visit the relevant Diocesan website page.

So how much do you know about the Deaf, Deafblind and Hard of Hearing people in your communities? Many misconceptions abound linked to communicating with people who have some form of hearing loss. 1 in 7 of the UK population experience some form of hearing loss, that is 1 in 7 of the community in your parish church.

Don’t shout; it doesn’t help. Many, although not all, Deaf and Hard of Hearing people lip read. Lip reading requires a great deal of skill. Only 30% of English words can be read accurately on the lips. Shouting at a person distorts the lip patterns and means it is much more difficult to lip read.
There is much more information on supporting the Deaf and Hard of Hearing on the Diocesan Website.

The Sunday after next, 24 May is World Communications Sunday which reminds us that we are to proclaim the Gospel to all whether hearing or deaf. The focus this year is on the new technologies that enable the all sorts of people to 'hear' the Good News in so many different ways especially the young. To download information and ideas for World Communication Sunday have a look at the pages on the Bishops' Conference website.

Part of the Vatican's efforts for World Communications Sunday is the launch of Vatican YouTube so why not visit the site http://www.youtube.com/vatican. Below is a sample from his visit to the Holy Land:

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