New book to include people with learning disabilities in church communities

Beyond Words is delighted to introduce Going to Church, the latest in our series of wordless books for people who find pictures easier to understand than words.

The book explores themes of friendship and inclusion, within a church setting. It tells the story of Alan, a young man who discovers what it means to belong to a church community. Alan finds some of the unfamiliar aspects of church difficult at first, but eventually makes friends who help him to become an active part of the community.

Katie Carpenter, a co-author on the book who has Down’s syndrome, explained how she found the experience of writing the book:

“Working on Going to Church was brilliant! I had to go on the train to London for meetings. My friends at Blakedown Church helped me with ideas. I hope the book helps people like me when they go to church.”

Going to Church can support people to explore aspects of a church community, and to decide if they want to be part of it. It will also help churches consider how to reduce the barriers to participation that some members of society face. Read together, it will help people to come together and form a common community.

Like all our books, it was created with the help of dozens of other experts, people with learning disabilities and their carers. We are so grateful to everyone who helped to bring Alan’s story to life.