Special Needs Ministry

Please do not hesitate to reach out for anything during this time. I will be praying that your families stay healthy and we can all come together again in celebration once this has passed. Remember, God's got this.

If this is too much to print or if you do not have a printer at home, please let me know and I will have a packet ready to go that can be picked up in the vestibule. 

week of August 2 lesson

week of August 2 alternate materials

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My Prayer Book

Special Needs Ministry

According to the most recent census data, 56.7 million people in the United States have a disability. That is nearly one in every five people. When 400 families of children with disabilities were asked, nearly 50% reported that they did not participate in faith-based activities because their child was not welcome or included.

The goal of the Special Needs Ministry here at Concordia is to create a place where families of children and youth with disabilities can comfortably and confidently worship. We hope to minister to each member of the family so that they will be able to ultimately call Concordia their spiritual home.

Sensory Room

Come see firsthand how Concordia has moved beyond sensory-friendly, beyond sensory-inclusive and all the way to sensory-regulating. Now we can confidently welcome and serve new families who would not have been able to previously attend church due to the high sensory needs of their children or youth with special needs. This would not have been possible without the financial grant and guidance from The Synapsory.

*Due to COVID-19, the sensory room is closed until further notice. But if you would like to see the room, contact Jessica Crawford at for a tour and for information about the Special Needs Ministry!

Families with a Child with Special Needs

Concordia's Special Needs Ministry is here to serve the entire family, not just the family member with disabilities.

Family Night

Family Night is a time for the special needs families at Concordia to come together in a way that doesn’t just include the individual with special needs but parents and siblings as well. A time for parents to be with other parents. Siblings to be with other siblings. A time when everyone’s needs are met and all the kids are having fun. Our hope is that this would be a time to build community and provide support for the family as a whole in a Christ-centered environment.

At Family Night...

  • Parents will come together for community-building, conversation and prayer.
  • All children and youth will participate in fun hands-on activities and games each month.
  • At each gathering, all children and youth will watch a short Bible study video series titled “God’s Masterpiece” and siblings will also spend a very small portion of the evening participating in separate activities together based on the SibShop model.
Children and Youth Special Needs

Kids with disabilities are welcome and integral members of the body of Christ and for this reason we strive to include them in all aspects of children and youth programming here at Concordia. The Special Needs Ministry offers inclusive services during the following programs:

KidsMin Sunday

Sundays, 9:20-10:30am

  • Buddies are available for those children who require assistance to fully participate.
  • A self-contained option is available for children who would benefit from an alternative, sensory-sensitive environment as well as modified delivery methods.

KIDS NIGHT

Wednesdays, 5:00-7:45pm for Grades 1-5

Children with special needs participate with assistance from a trained buddy and modified curriculum and materials, if necessary.

CONFIRMATION

Wednesdays, 6:00-8:00pm for Grades 6-8

Youth with special needs participate with assistance from a trained buddy and modified curriculum and materials, if necessary.

*Programs have been paused due to COVID-19, and will resume once we can execute them safely.


Participation and placement in programming is not determined based on age or academic ability. We look at each child as an individual and work with the parents to determine what would work best for the child/youth and their family. Ages listed are for reference purposes only.

In order to better serve your family, we ask that parents fill out an intake form for the Special Needs Ministry. The questions are asked for the benefit of your child so we may provide the best experience and safest environment for everyone involved. Our church and our children’s ministry workers and volunteers respect your family’s right to privacy. Any information shared from the intake form is communicated directly with those caring for your child and only on a “need to know” basis. (Note: forms can be obtained directly from Jessica Crawford.)

DOWNLOAD THE INTAKE FORM

Please note at this time, if your child is unable to feed themselves or toilet independently or exhibits behaviors that are deemed unsafe for themselves or those around them, one parent or guardian must remain in the building while your child participates in programs and activities.

Adults with Special Needs

Individuals with disabilities of all ages have the right to grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ and to know they are valued by God and God’s people.

BIBLE FELLOWSHIP FOR ADULTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

Concordia’s Special Needs Ministry offers a weekly Bible fellowship class for adults with special needs ages 18 and up that meets every Tuesday evening at 6:00pm. The class begins with refreshments and conversation followed by Biblical instruction delivered in a way that is accessible to adults with special learning needs. The class concludes with a craft, recipe or service project related to the lesson and prayer.

Contact Jessica Crawford at to register.

CK Deaf Ministry

Due to COVID-19, only in-home worship is currently being interpreted. You can find our weekly interpreted worship services here.

We anticipate a return to in-person interpreted worship later this summer.

For those with hearing impairments, our worship spaces are equipped with Assistive Listening Devices.

BASIC ASL—THE FIRST 100 SIGNS

Join us on Wednesdays from 7:15-8:00pm in the Library for American Sign Language (ASL). There is much more to learning ASL than just memorizing signs. ASL has its own grammar, culture, history, terminology and other important aspects. In this class, learners will get the chance to engage with the vocabulary in a conversational format and will quickly be able to put it to use on Sunday mornings and out in the community!

Contact Jessica Crawford, 314-374-0682 (voice/text) to register.

*Programs have been paused due to COVID-19, and will resume once we can execute them safely.

Buddy Ministry
WHO IS A BUDDY?

Buddies are anyone with a heart that desires to serve children and youth with disabilities and to help them learn about the love of Jesus. Buddies are typically middle school to college-aged youth but adults are encouraged to volunteer as well.

WHAT DOES A BUDDY DO?

Sometimes all that is needed of a buddy is to be in the same room when the kiddo requires a little bit of extra encouragement and guidance. Other times, a buddy will work closely with their friend with special needs providing constant support so they can participate with their peers.

Every volunteer is trained by Jessica, Director for Special Needs, before being placed with a child or youth with special needs. o buddy is ever left to “fly solo” until they are ready.

HOW MUCH TIME IS REQUIRED OF A BUDDY?

Buddies volunteer during children and youth programing on Wednesday nights and/or Sunday mornings. A weekly commitment is appreciated but not required to join the buddy ministry. (Summer opportunities available too.)

fill out the buddy application

Contact Jessica Crawford at to register.

Being a buddy has been an amazing experience because I have been able to make the Word of God accessible for all kids.