We are an intentionally inclusive congregation that welcomes

people of all

religious backgrounds, cultural origins, differing abilities,

and sexual orientation.

Unitarian Universalist Community Church

Glen Allen, Virginia

Amazing Grace

Disability Is Natural Books and Media

New Ways of Thinking and Revolutionary Common Sense

Dawn Machonis, a parent from Virginia, shared the following story with me:

November 8, 1998 started as an ordinary day. Little did I know it would become an extraordinary day that is permanently etched in my heart’s memory. It was the day I saw God.

As usual, our family went to church that Sunday morning. I don’t remember much about the service except that a visiting musician was present. We sat in the third row so eight-year-old Gracie (who has Down Syndrome) and six-year-old Jacob could see better.

For some reason, Gracie wanted to sit in the first row, so she did—by herself. When the musician began playing "Amazing Grace" on his zither, Gracie recognized “her song” and stood up. I am grateful I did not act on my parental instinct and ask my daughter to sit down, for what transpired was awe-inspiring. Gracie began to dance.


My daughter has been known to “ham it up,” but that was not the case on this day. Gracie was totally lost in her dance. I can only describe it as Gracie being filled with the Spirit. Click here to continue.

 DISABILITY IS NATURAL!