Every so often, people ask me spiritual questions. One that comes up again and again is, “Who do you think is going to heaven, and who is going to hell?” My short answer is, “I’m an agnostic.” I know that “agnostic” is usually a word used to describe whether or not people believe in God.…

William is now thirteen months old. We’re out of the newborn stage, thank the Lord. If there’s one thing I now know for sure about myself, it is that I am not a “baby person.” The cuddling is nice, I suppose, but a) William rarely cuddled and b) I like talking with my children more…

NPR ran a story tonight: “Rethinking ‘Retarded’: Should It Leave The Lexicon?” (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=112479383). I wrote a response: “You’re such a retard” implies, “you’re acting the way I imagine someone with an intellectual disability would act.” “That’s so retarded,” a more passive usage, implies, “That’s messed up in a way that reminds me of people with…

There’s an email that floats around, especially among those of us who have children or siblings or other loved ones with mental disabilities. It is sweet and endearing and describes an adult woman’s love for her brother. Early on, she says his mental age is 8. She goes on to explain what he does every…

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Amy Julia Becker

Amy Julia Becker writes about theology, disability, family, and culture. Two major life experiences have shaped her writing and her faith—caring for her mother-in-law as she battled cancer and welcoming her daughter Penny into the world after she was diagnosed at birth with Down syndrome. Both experiences expanded and enriched her understanding of what it means to be human and to receive each and every person as a gift.  A graduate of Princeton University and Princeton Theological Seminary, she is the author of Penelope Ayers: A Memoir, and the forthcoming A Good and Perfect Gift (Bethany House). Her essays have appeared in First Things, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Christian Century, ChristianityToday.com, and Bloom, among other online venues.

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