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faith & disability

Faith can be important aspect of flourishing for many people with disabilities and their families. This line of work focuses on the place of faith in the lives of individuals, the postures and practices of faith communities that see themselves as incomplete without the presence and participation of people with disabilities, and the ways in which service systems can support a life of faith.

research studies

  • Boehm, T. L., & Carter, E. W. (2019). Family quality of life and its correlates among parents of children and adults with intellectual disability. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 124, 99-115. doi:10.1352/1944-7558-124.2.99

  • Carter, E. W., & Boehm, T. L. (2019). Religious and spiritual expressions of youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities, 44, 37-52. doi:10.1177/1540796919828082

  • Carter, E. W., Bumble, J. L., Griffin, B., & Curcio, M. P. (2017). Community conversations on faith and disability: Identifying new practices, postures, and partners for congregations. Pastoral Psychology, 66, 575-594. doi: 10.1007/s11089-017-0770-4

  • Biggs, E. E., & Carter, E. W. (2016). Quality of life for transition-age youth with autism or intellectual disability. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 46, 190-204. doi: 10.1007/s10803-015-2563-x

  • Carter, E. W., Biggs, E. E., & Boehm, T. L. (2016). Being present versus having a presence: Dimensions of belonging for young people with disabilities and their families. Christian Education Journal, 13, 127-146 

  • Carter, E. W., Boehm, T. L., Annandale, N. H., & Taylor, C. (2016). Supporting congregational inclusion for children and youth with disabilities and their families. Exceptional Children, 82, 372-389. doi: 10.1177/0014402915598773

  • Boehm, T. L., Carter, E. W., & Taylor, J. L. (2015). Factors associated with family quality of life during the transition to adulthood for youth and young adults with developmental disabilities. American Journal on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 120, 395-411. doi: 10.1352/1944-7558-120.5.395. 

  • Carter, E. W., Kleinert, H. L., LoBianco, T. F., Sheppard-Jones, K. A., Butler, L. N., & Tyree, M. S. (2015). Congregational participation of a national sample of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 53, 381-393. doi: 10.1352/1934-9556-53.6.381  

  • Annandale, N. H., & Carter, E. W. (2014). Disability and theological education: A North American study. Theological Education, 48, 83-102 

  • Liu, E. X., Carter, E. W., Boehm, T. L., Annandale, N., & Taylor, C. (2014). In their own words: The place of faith in the lives of young people with intellectual disability and autism. Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 52, 388-404. doi: 10.1352/1934-9556-52.5.388

  • Ault, M. J., Collins, B. C., & Carter, E. W. (2013). Congregational participation and supports for children and adults with disabilities: Parent perceptions. Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 51, 48-61. doi: 10.1352/1934-9556-51.01.048

  • Ault, M. J., Collins, B. C., & Carter, E. W. (2013). Factors associated with participation in faith communities for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. Journal of Religion, Disability, and Health, 17, 184-211. doi: 10.1080/15228967.2013.781777


reviews and other publications

  • Carter, E. W. (2019). Spirituality and the family unit. In Turns, B., Ramisch, J., & Whiting, J. (Eds.), Systematically treating autism: A guide for empowering families (pp. 179-187). Oxford, UK: Routledge

  • Carter, E. W. (2016). A place of belonging: Research at the intersection of faith and disability. Review & Expositor, 113, 167-180. doi: 10.1177/0034637316637861

  • Gaventa, B., & Carter, E. W. (2016). Flourishing and spirituality: Healing and wholeness without perfection. Impact, 29(1), 14-15.

  • Carter, E. W. (2013). Supporting inclusion and flourishing in the religious and spiritual lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Inclusion, 1, 64-75. doi: 10.1352/2326-6988-1.1.064

  • Carter, E. W. (2011). After the benediction: Walking alongside people with significant disabilities and their families in faith and life. Journal of Religion, Disability, and Health, 15, 395-413. doi: 10.1080/15228967.2011.619340

  • Gaventa, W., Allen, W., Kleinert, H., & Carter, E. W. (2014). Putting faith to work: The call and opportunity for faith communities to transform the lives of people with disabilities and their communities. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt Kennedy Center.

  • Carter, E. W., Taylor, C. E., Ault, M., Collins, B., Kleinert, H., & Tyree, M. (2012). Recent research on spiritual supports: What we know and where we might go. TASH Connections, 38(1), 31-34.

  • Gaventa, W., & Carter, E. W. (2012). Spirituality: From rights to relationships. TASH Connections, 38(1), 5-6


books, chapters & practice guides

  • Carter, E. W. (2007). Including people with disabilities in faith communities: A guide for service providers, families, and congregations. Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes.

  • Carter, E. W. (in press). Believing and belonging: Embracing children with disabilities. In M. Larson & R. Keeley (Eds.), Bridging theory and practice in children’s spirituality. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

  • Carter, E. W. (in press). Spirituality and the family unit. In Turns, B., Ramisch, J., & Whiting, J. (Eds.), Systematically treating autism: A guide for empowering families. Oxford, UK: Routledge.

  • Carter, E. W. (2017). From barriers to belonging: Promising pathways toward inclusive ministry. In A. J. Johnson, R. Nelson, & E. M. Lund (Eds.), Religion, disability, and gender violence. New York, NY: Springer.

  • Carter, E. W. (2010). Faith development and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. In R. Keeley (Ed.), Shaped by God: Twelve essentials for nurturing faith in children, youth, and adults. Grand Rapids, MI: Faith Alive.

  • Carter, E. W., Endress, T., Gustafson, J., Shouse, J., Taylor, C., Utley, A., Amado, A., Nord, D., Timmons, J., Kleinert, H., Tyree, M., Canevaro, A., Seay, P., Gaventa, W., & Allen, W. (2016). Putting faith to work: A guide for congregations and communities on connecting job seekers with disabilities to meaningful work. Nashville, TN: Collaborative on Faith and Disability.

  • Carter, E. W. (2015). Spiritual supports for students with disabilities. In Scarlett, W. G. (Ed.), Classroom management: An A-Z guide (pp. 778-780). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. 

  • Taylor, C. E., Carter, E. W., Annandale, N. H., Boehm, T. L., & Logeman, A. K. (2014). Welcoming people with developmental disabilities and their families: A practical guide for congregations. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt Kennedy Center.