Today’s Autism Light is St. Peters Roman Catholic Church.
St. Peters Roman Catholic Church is located at 350 Fair Street in Warwick, Rhode Island. The church was established in 1933 and the present pastor of the church is Rev. Roger C. Cagne. St. Peters Roman Catholic Church is an Autism Light because they have a special autism program that helps Catholic individuals with autism in Rhode Island to experience the Sacraments.
History: In the Fall of 2008, St. Peters began the program of offering Autism & the Sacraments as part of their Faith Formation offerings. The program is part of several like it in the Catholic Church, but it is the first of its kind in the state of Rhode Island. In March of 2009 an article was written by the Associated Press on this unique autism program by the church. More information on this successful and ongoing program can be found on their website at http://stpeterswarwick.com/autism-program/.
Program: As part of the program, children meet every two weeks to learn about their faith. To develop the program volunteers were used that come from the Catholic faith but who also have professional experience in working with autistic students outside of the church.Anyone interested in having their child enroll should call Margaret Andreozzi, who is the elementary faith formation coordinator. Her number is 401/461-5691. There is a waiting list to get into the program.
Mass: 3 Masses (worship services) are celebrated with the families in the Autism & the Sacraments program. These Masses have been led by the church’s pastor, Rev. Roger Cagne. Some of the changes he makes to these special Masses is the hour-long liturgy is shortened to 15 minutes, by skipping music, making prayers optional, and having only a brief message. Rev. Roger Cagne said about this program, “The whole point is Jesus is totally inclusive. He directs his followers to do the same (Source).”
Social Media: You can follow St. Peters Church on Facebook at http://stpeterswarwick.com. Special thanks to St. Peters Roman Catholic Church in Warwick, Rhode Island for helping those with autism to be able to participate in the Catholic religious faith.
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