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Justice, Spirituality & Education Journal

Abstract

This paper is a theoretical discourse that proposes a justice-infused, biblically based special education inclusion model, the “Shalom Model of Inclusion.” After discussing justice, inclusion, incarnationality, the Hebrew concept of shalom, and agape love which form the foundational thinking for the proposed “Shalom Model of Inclusion,” the author introduces the central concept of Imago Dei and the four domains of the “Shalom Model of Inclusion” which are: shared curriculum experience, shared strengths and needs, effective and differentiated pedagogy, as well as community and collaborative praxis. The model is illustrated with the love, compassion and collaboration shared in the L’Arche communities where disabilities, instead of being viewed negatively as problems to be solved, are viewed as gifts, and opportunities to learn new ways to love, to be faithful, to live together in recognition of the naturalness and goodness of difference, as well as discover the importance of weakness and vulnerability. L’Arche tangibly demonstrates the practicality and effectiveness of shalom inclusion.

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