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Disability and Faith

About Chantal Huinink

Chantal lives in Kitchener, Ontario, and has served with Christian Horizons for more than four years in various capacities. She is an experienced motivational speaker, social justice and accessibility advocate. Chantal has her Masters of Divinity and Social Work from Wilfrid Laurier Universityhas and a BA in psychology and human development from the University of Guelph.

Advocating for the Canadian Disability Benefit

In the aftermath of Tracy Latimer's tragic death, Chantal Huinick grappled with profound questions of existence and justice. She unveils the enduring impact of Tracy's legacy on her life and work.

The Impact of Shared Power (Part 3)

What relationships do you have with people who are not yet represented in the decision-making that you are a part of? What steps can you take to connect them with others who would support them in such roles or invite them to imagine themselves in these positions?

The Powerful Potential of a Level Playing Field (Part 2)

It has taken me a long time to even consider sharing the power and platforms I have been given with others who are marginalized. I find this hard because admittedly I am fearful of giving up my power and feeling powerless again.

Power in Policies Rather Than People (Part 1)

Often, somebody that holds a lot of power or privilege of one type has an easier on-ramp to additional forms of privilege and power than somebody who does not. Thus, rather than being evenly distributed, power tends to accumulate. This is a symptom of our broken humanity rather than the values of the kingdom of God in action.

Disability Pride: Disability Confidence

I do not have a problem with the word “disability.” In my view, disability is not a positive or negative. It just is what it is. Asking if I have disability pride is like asking me if I am proud of my brown hair. I like it. Then again, it is the only hair colour I’ve ever known, and I didn’t do anything to earn it.

Independence or interdependence? (Part 1)

I was born with a physical disability known as Cerebral Palsy. As a result I use a power wheelchair: I also live with limited gross and fine motor skills and a [Read More]

Belonging, Like Jazz

Like Jazz musicians, church leaders need to become masterful at holding tension and refrain from resolving it prematurely. Rather than encouraging others to strictly preach victory in Jesus, perhaps we need to make space for people to find their own voices and speak their hurts or cry out to God. 

Unshaken Kingdom: Disruption, Transformation, and the Accessible Church

The therapeutic response to chronic illness or disability is usually rest and pacing. However we live in a society where that is increasingly discouraged, if not impossible. Most people’s temptation is to change their circumstances or to find solutions quickly, rather than trust that God will provide what is needed. Instead, Mary conveys a sense of peace from the beginning.  It is this sense of peace which comes from God, and trusting in God, that I think empowered Mary and can also empower us to respond to whatever we face thoughtfully and prayerfully.

The Gap Between Disability and Community

Wentworth Miller says when you’re in survival mode, there isn’t space for “we” or “community.” It becomes all about “I” and “me.” He is not relating specifically to the challenges of disability, or faith communities fostering , but he shares valuable information about the challenges that may arise if you feel singular, different, and alone; if you have to spend the majority of your days in survival mode over the long term.

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