Creating a church that is truly inclusive will come with a cost. Wanting a return on investment is not inherently wrong, but when it comes to the fear of being able to finance a special needs ministry, the most important thing to focus on is where the repayment will come from.
When church leadership is approached about the need to create environments that can serve the needs of the disability and special-needs community, the most common response is a lack of education and lack of resources. In other words, there is no room in the budget, no room in the mission, no room in the vision of the church, and no room for discussion about disability theology.
Communication from one person to another is so fundamental that we assume all but the youngest children can understand what we say—and even what we mean—in our own language. But mental health conditions and high functioning autism often interfere with a person’s ability to communicate with others, much like living as a stranger in a strange land, speaking a foreign tongue.