“Let us pray that people with disabilities may be at the center of attention in society, and that institutions offer inclusion programs that enhance their active participation”. Pope Francis presents this prayer intention for the month of December in a video featuring people with disabilities, who the Holy Father says, “are among the most fragile among us. Some of them”, he explains, “suffer rejection, rooted in either ignorance or prejudice, which then marginalizes them”. To contrast this sad reality, the Pope says “civil institutions need to support their projects through access to education, employment, and places where they can express their creativity”. The video, in fact, shows individuals with different disabilities participating in a wide range of activities, including sports, cooking, waiting tables and painting. These are the sorts of inclusive programs and initiatives Pope Francis encourages. “Above all else”, he adds, “big hearts are needed who want to accompany” people with disabilities. “It means changing our mentality a little and opening ourselves to the abilities and talents of these people who are differently abled, both in society as well as in the life of the Church”. The Pope clarifies that “creating a completely accessible parish does not only mean eliminating physical barriers”, but also “assumes that we stop talking about ‘them’ and start talking about ‘us’. Available online at www.thepopevideo.org and translated into more than 23 languages, the video for the prayer intention for December was created and produced by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network, and distributed by La Machi Agency, in collaboration with the Dicastery for Communication.
01 December 2023