Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Full Inclusion Plan
for Fellowship Bible Church
By: Timothy Sloan
Members of Fellowship Bible Church (FBC) believe that all people need to have the opportunity to learn the biblical truths of God’s Word. This includes those that have any type of disability. This is why FBC feels led to organize and execute a full inclusion program for the children’s ministry. FBC is a growing church, and with constant expansion, there are increased needs. One family in particular has inspired FBC members to establish a unique addition to the children’s ministry, the Button family. Mr. and Mrs. Button have only one child, 6 year old Benjamin. He has been diagnosed with autistic disorder. Recognizing the exceptional needs of this child, FBC has formed a program that is intellectually appropriate for him as well as his peers. The goal of this full inclusion program is to accommodate for Benjamin’s needs while giving the other children similar treatment. FBC’s framework explains the reasoning for this program through several perspectives. Benjamin’s disorder is explained, including symptomatic behaviors. FBC’s plan to develop this children’s ministry program is described in detail. As part of FBC’s children’s ministry mission statement, commitment to all children is a priority in order to guarantee that each child learns biblical truths. This is achieved by utilizing a full inclusion plan which is the foundation for this agenda.
Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Full Inclusion Plan for Fellowship Bible Church
Fellowship Bible Church (FBC) opened for its first Sunday worship service on September 2nd, 2001. FBC is a nondenominational, evangelical, Christian church with about 400 members. FBC’s leadership is composed of 8 elders who all have the responsibility for a specific ministry. Sunday service begins with Sunday school at 9:30 am and following that is the worship service at 11:00 am. The worship service includes a time of praise and worship, singing, and a time of practical teaching from the Bible (Fellowship Bible Church, 2013). The worship is also composed of a mixture of Christian contemporary songs and classic hymns. These two genres are alternated every other week to adhere to the liking of the members. The Sunday morning services last about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Children’s church is also provided during the Sunday morning service. The church attendees are compiled of 58% men and 42% women. There are 125 teenagers in the youth ministry, 35 infants and toddlers in the nursery, and 56 children total in the church. This church is an excellent mix of members who share the same beliefs, love, and passion for the Word.
Pastor Phil Moser is one of the three pastors. He speaks more often than the others. He has been the lead pastor for 11 years. He is recognized as the teaching pastor. The two associate pastors are Pastor Jack Klose and Pastor Hal Russell. Pastor Jack Klose is head of student ministries and Pastor Hal Russell is head of adult ministries and pastoral care. They fill in when Pastor Phil is out of town or unable to preach due to other reasons. Fellowship Bible Church uses the New King James Versions of the Bible. Every first Sunday of the month, biblical communion is observed. Since Pastor Jack leads student ministries, this paper will be focused on his department and the establishment of a full inclusion ministry for a child with an autism spectrum disorder. Current Children’s Ministry
FBC is recognized for its special interest in children. Their current children’s ministry consists of a nursery, Sunday school, and Children’s church. FBC’s children’s ministry is constantly growing. Since the number of children keeps growing, the church has provided several ministries to compensate for this growth. The nursery consists of infants to two year old children. The nursery is available during Sunday school hour as well as Sunday morning service. Parents should feel...
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