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Autism Resources



In 2010 and 2011, the School of Theology and Ministry and the Archdiocese of Boston Office of Religious Education hosted the Pyne Memorial Presentations, two all-day workshops on the topic of faith formation for persons with autism.  Both presentations were generously supported by the Pyne Endowment Trust in memory of Professor Margaret E. Pyne, a lifelong advocate for persons with disabilities.

Susan Swanson, a speech/language pathologist with 27 years’ experience working with children with autism, and a faculty member in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Massachusetts Medical School, presented both workshops.  Below are video and print resources collected from those two workshops, recommended by Susan Swanson.

Autism, Part 1:
Forming Faith through a Community of Inclusion

presented February 26, 2010

View Video

Print Resources


Autism, Part 2: Forming Faith within an Expansive Community
presented February 11, 2011

PowerPoint Slides

Print Resources:

Communicative Functions/Means Grid 

Transactional Supports 

Joint Activity Routines, Rituals, and Spiritual Practices 

Parent/Caregiver Questionnaire 

Faith Formation Parent Interview 

Expressing and Understanding Emotions 

Catechetical Education Priorities 

Criteria for Creating Meaningful Faith Formation Opportunities for Children and Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Worksheet for Creating Meaningful Faith Formation Opportunities

Total Catechesis/Religious Education: A Vision for Now and Always

Additional Resources:

"Pastoral Statement of U.S. Bishops on People with Disabilities"

“Guidelines for the Celebration of the Sacraments for persons with Disabilities, National Conference of Catholic Bishops”

“Dimensions of Faith and Congregational Ministries with Person with  Developmental Disabilities and Their Families”

“People First Language”

Helpful Websites and Resources

Recommended Reading