Catholic theology on disability

so through my experience, ì’ve come up with my own thoughts about having a disability. I want to make sure they’re compatible with Catholicism though because that is an important thing to me. not all Christians view things the same so it can get a bit confusing

sorry for this being a bit long but I have to include a bit of my story

I was born completely blind and my parents really had a hard time adjusting to it. my mom especially. she`s Chinese and in their culture, God doesn’t really exist. so disability is viewed as something pretty shameful and dishonourable. she eeven admits now that if she has known at the time, she probably would have had an abortion. so thanks the lord that the knowledge was kept from everyone

growing up with a disability, you don’t really notice anything is wrong. the first few years of my life, no matter how many times my parents tried to explain it to me. I just didn’t really get it. I couldn’t figure out the difference between seeing and not seeing. so I tried to do everything that kids do and succeeded for the most part, probably with some extra bumps and bruises, but pretty much ok. my parents value independence so that is at least a gift they gave me, all other problems aside.

and then school starts. and everything changed. I was suddenly thrust in to this world with a whole bunch of other people and no one seemed to understand. it suddenly seemed like I was like an alien to everyone.mmy first kindergarten teacher refused to have me in her class so the other one decided to take me on. she was a very nice elderly lady who had a blind uncle in the past so she understood a bit at least. but other kids didn’t want to be my friend. and they always seemed awkward around me. but if kids don’t understand, it’s ok, I mean I get that. what’s even worse is that many parents encouraged it. some would pull their kids away from me, or tell them not to be my friend or excluded me from being invited to birthdays or other get togethers.

so I spent most of my childhood wondering exactly why I was here. we didn’t go to church much; my dad was raised catholic but didn’t practice much. so we usually ended up floating around various protestant church that my mom’s friends would invite her to. so I had a vague idea about god and I starting begging him to take the blindness away, I would have given anything tto be ‘normal’. I just wanted everyone to like me. well, obviously, that never happened. I continued to be alone, for the most part. I had kids who tried to be my friend, but it was hard for them. other kids would make fun of them for playing with me and they felt a lot of pressure because of that.

then I reached high school. I was so tired of the life I had. I knew something needed to change. we finally started going back to catholic church after a big issue happened at home. my understand of God deepened and I realized something. that even if no one else liked me, Jesus did. and if my only motivation was to be healed just to be liked, it wasn’t going to happen. I relize it now. that if someone only loved when I could see, and can’t love when I don’t have sight, then they don’t really love me at all. and if I even got my vision back today, it’s a question I will always be asking myself. every new person I met, I would always wonder, would they have been my friend if I still had the disability? it’s a good way for god to remove people in my life that I may not necessarily need.

continued from above. I think I was getting close to the word limit

once I learned those things, that was the day I stopped asking God to heal me. I know that this was his way of keeping me close to him and anything he wanted me to do, he would give me the strength and the means to do it. in many ways, what I thought was my greatest cross is also my greatest blessing. for example, I don’t have to worry about the issue of possible attraction of pornography, or judging others based on appearances, or temptations of seeing immodestly dressed people

now, I get a lot of different opinions on the subject. that god wills everyone to be healed or that disability is connected to sin. or that the only reason disability is to manifest god’s glory and that can only be accomplished through healing and if I don’t asked to be healed then I’m closing myself to god’s glory

but somehow I know, in my heart, that it’s not his will to heal me, he doesn’t need to and I don’t need him to either. I’m more concerned about my spiritual state over my physical one while on earth. and I can do most things that my sighted peers can as well, albeit in different ways or with accomodations. is it easy? definitely not. do I still get frustrating days. of course. but its not really the being blind part that’s the problem. it’s the attitude of others that I have the most trouble with. but it reminds me of Jesus, not many people understood him either, and most people ended up leaving his side at one point or another.

sorry for all my rambling.

what do you guys think? are my views in keeping with catholic teaching? not seeing is not really the suffering part but it’s people who make it difficult. and does it have to be healing miracle or suffering? can God just be ok with having different kinds of people in the world who are able to accept being different?

Your idea is fine.
God created you. He loves you. that’s it.
People who are wanting to discourage you from believing that God has a plan for you, that is specific to you, don’t know Catholic teaching. It’s ludicrous to think that society’s view of perfection is God’s idea of perfection. It’s time to stop worrying about the people in the world that are less than helpful, shall we say. Pray fro them. Encourage them in the truth when you can. Be aware that some people are set in their thinking.
There are people that have enormous problems, and difficulties. And they are beloved of God. And they trust in God. And they have a good relationship with God.
I think you have answered your question very well.

A disability is something that many have. It may be mental or physical. God will always love you and care for you. He helped me. He helped me understand.

God bless you,

Ed

Wow, you taught me something. I go back and forth with my disabilities but mainly I say I am truly grateful for them. I am closer to God than I would have been without them. I know it down in my soul. And know in my heart that if He doesn’t heal me, then there is something greater God has chosen for me and His reason is with love. I may not understand fully but I can rely on the fact that it is for my benefit.

Also, I know that on bad days God is with me. And when I pray for relief, He gives it to me. Whether it’s to remind me to take my medicine for pain or to rest or even laughter that makes me forget for a minute.

All I know is that I’m never alone. I hope I will always remember that. I love you Heavenly Father. Thank you for creating me to be your child. :heart:

Oh and Angell1? Our lives are only here temporarily. We don’t truly live until we are with God.

Love, Sheila

Personally, I have a speech and language disorder (pretty much repetitive speech, though it’s full words/phrases, not beginning sounds) and a tic disorder. Doesn’t really affect my life, though I figure God gave it to me so I don’t get too cocky.

I also teach children with severe disabilities. I love them to death, really. Honestly, I think people with disabilities are a blessing - a true blessing. My students have purity of heart that is usually only seen with small children. And, as they have no choice but to be themselves, they show what it is like to be truly free from the masks that we put on every day. Disabilities are not a curse - they’re a blessing.

Actually, at times, I think that it is we who have mild or no disabilities who are cursed. Remember, in the story of the man born blind in John’s gospel, it was only the man born blind who could truly see. Those who could physically see could not see the truth, yet this man, who could not physically see until Jesus healed him, easily saw Who Jesus was.

I don’t know about the theology of it sorry,but I feel you could be a great inspiration to many people.
Due to the blindness,I don’t know how much you are or arn’t aware of this but in this world there is excessive focus on people having to be beautiful and many people almost worshipping people for looking a certain way.
Many people value attractive people more and see unattractive or people who weigh more as being worth less or invisible etc.
I see in real life and all over Facebook comments from non believers and Catholics alike complimenting people on their beauty,there’s just so much focus on it and it can become a big pressure.
Some say this is a problem just of today but I think it was like that in the past too.
Eg:in the 50’s there were people like Marilyn Monroe etc who were always adored for having what’s perceived as great beauty.
It just seems it’s more now due to the computer era and everyone being “in each other’s face” etc.

I’m curious what is the cause of your blindness and by what method can you use the computer?
eg:if a person types similar sounding words like “weight” or “way” are you able to know which one it’s referring too etc?

yes, I have noticed that their is a great emphasis on that. which I think is very unfortunate. if we focus on the txternal, we miss the real person inside

my condition is called leber’s congenital amaurosis. it’s an autosomal recessive condition where a defective gene makes it hard to produce photoreceptor cells.

I use a program on the computer called jaws for windows. it’s basically a text to speech program that reads whatever is on the screen. similar sounding words are usually no problem

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