Mental Illness Awareness


Mental Illness Awareness Week: October 4 - 10, 2015

One out of every four families in a parish will have to cope with the effects of mental illness. Find out some simple ways your parish can reach out to them. 


Oppose California Assisted Suicide Bill

The NCPD continues to struggle to protect from discrimination all persons, especially those with disabilities, through the legalization of Physician Assisted Suicide, which targets those deemed by others to be unfit to live.  Evidence shows that despite proposed restrictions to those with “terminal illness,” those very persons inevitably also have incurred a disability rendering them, by social policy, as less worthy than others of the legal protection against suicide. 

The California Legislature, after failing to pass such legislation earlier this summer, has passed out of its Public Health and Developmental Services Committee another such proposal.  Below is a link to the letter sent on behalf of the NCPD to the Governor of California and relevant legislative committee members seeking to prevent this proposal from becoming law.  Please have your voice heard by contacting Governor Brown indicating your opposition to AB-15, End of Life Option Act: (916) 445-2841.


ADA Interfaith Worship Service

NCPD part of Interfaith Worship Service

to Celebrate the Progress and Promise of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
The Interfaith Disability Advocacy Coalition (IDAC), a program of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), will host From Access to Belonging, an interfaith worship service celebrating the progress and promise of the ADA on Sunday, July 26 at 3:00 p.m. at First Trinity Lutheran Church, 309 E Street, NW, Washington, D.C.

Other Timely Items

  NCPD Resources Against Physician-Assisted Suicide ADA Anniversary July 26, 2015  RSVP for Mass and Reception at WMoF  Nominate a Parish for Loyola Award



2015 Loyola Parish Award Nominations


Nominate a Parish for the Loyola Press Opening Doors Award

Deadline October 2, 2015

The Loyola Press Opening Doors Award honors a parish community that demonstrates inclusion and engagement practices that facilitate the meaningful participation of people with disabilities in all aspects of the parish community and the life of the Catholic Church.

The winning parish will be awarded a plaque and $1,000 to be used by the parish to continue ministry that welcomes people with disabilities.  





Mass and Reception at the World Meeting of Families

 Attend a Mass and Reception Honoring the Gifts of Persons with Disabilities, the Deaf Community Family, Friends and Caregivers
On September 25, 2015, at 5:00 PM a Mass and reception honoring the lives and gifts of persons with disabilities, the Deaf community, family, friends, and caregivers will be held at the World Meeting of Families (WMOF)  (taking place September 22-27, 2015 in Philadelphia). 

NCPD will host this event with the National Catholic Office of the Deaf, the International Catholic Deaf Association, U.S. and the Office for Persons with Disabilities and the Deaf Apostolate, Archdiocese of Philadelphia.  You are all cordially invited to attend the Mass (5:00 p.m.) and following reception at The Shrine of St. John Neumann, 1019 N. 5th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123.

The reception will be hosted by Our Sunday Visitor.

(Pope Francis will not be at this Mass.)

Five Action Steps
RSVP today for this Mass and Reception to be held on Sept. 25 (be sure to indicate any disability accommodations you may need) Encourage your bishops and priests to attend and concelebrate Encourage pilgrims from your (Arch)Diocese to attend the Mass & Reception If you are attending the Congress: Stop by the NCPD Exhibit booth. Attend the workshop presented by NCPD executive director, Janice Benton on Embracing the Struggles and Blessings of Disabilities on Thursday, September 24 from 4:15 – 5:15 pm 

 To RSVP for Mass and Reception click here.




NCPD calls on our whole Catholic faith community to remain united in affirming the dignity of every person—regardless of their disabilities or capacity for independence. NCPD staunchly refutes historic notions of the concept of "life unworthy of life." 






Encouragement for Fathers of Children with Special Needs


Book Description

Special Children, Blessed Fathers: Encouragement for Fathers of Children with Special Needs

All the author book royalties for this book are being donated to NCPD.  

This book is a treasure-trove of heart-warming stories, practical help, and inspiration for fathers of children with special needs. Raising a child or children with special needs can be very difficult for families, and the full efforts of all members of the family, especially fathers, are required to make it work. Men have a special calling, a vocation, to step up to our God-given responsibilities as husbands and fathers no matter what the challenges and give our best effort. Special Children, Blessed Fathers is an inspirational “call to arms” for fathers to view these wonderful children with special needs as true blessings and lead our families through the challenging times we will likely encounter. This book provides practical and helpful examples from the stories of other fathers who are blessed to have children with special needs. Their heartfelt sharing, candid insights from wives, siblings and others, along with Scripture and Church teaching, provide an excellent resource to equip men to live up to the expectations placed upon their shoulders. Dads, when you read this book, you will be encouraged, inspired, and better equipped to accept the special responsibility that only you can do. Remember that our families are God’s gift to us. The special love and care we show our children and wives is our gift back to Him. 

In honor of Cardinal George

NCPD honors the life of Francis Cardinal George who was a longtime Board member and our Episcopal Moderator for over a decade. We give thanks for him and and all that he did for NCPD, people with disabilities and the Church. Along with all those who knew him we celebrate his life and commend him to the Lord.


See the link below for information regarding his funeral services.

ADA Anniversary Plans

 What are Your Plans for the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act?

Tell us your plans for celebrating the anniversary of ADA, July 25th, 2015, and we will share them on our website, through Facebook and in an upcoming special email.

NCPD will be cosponsoring an interfaith prayer service here in DC on the actual day.  

Fr. Joe Mulcrone in Chicago is serving on a committee to involve faith communities.

We know there are plenty more events scheduled. Send your plans or ways in which your offices will be involved to NCPD at


The ADA National Network is providing a media kit and resources to help generate ideas for celebrating the anniversary.  Click on the "25" logo above to be taken to their webpage.

One resource of note is a tip sheet on writing press releases, which can be found here (

"The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law in 1990. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. The purpose of the law is to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. The ADA is divided into five titles (or sections) that relate to different areas of public life."

For more informatiion see a fact sheet on the ADA.



Below are some ADA related resources. Feel free to review them for ideas on how to celebrate the impact of the ADA in your faith community.

The Collaborative on Faith and Disability has an ADA Anniversary Resource page. See also their page of Online Resources for Inclusive Faith Supports.   AAPD has recently made available an online version of That All May Worship which is an excellent resource for congregations interested in becoming accessible and welcoming of people with disabilities. You may find other resources that are of interest on their Interfaith page.

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