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Saint of the DayBook ReviewsGuest Columnist

 

 CHRISM MASS 2019

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Call to Continuing Conversion and Rite of Election 2019

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May 19, 2019

May 5, 2019

April 21, 2019 Easter Sunday

 

 

    The Dead Sea Scrolls series

 

   St. Nicholas School, Kinsley, Advent Cantata, Dec. 7, 2008

 

   

 

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Scroll to bottom to navigate to different departments

Internet video series shines God’s light on special kids

(See Chris's videos by clicking here.)

By Dave Myers

Southwest Kansas Catholic

Hidden in the billions of bytes of information flowing from the Internet every micro-second is a video series dedicated to the celebration of the uniqueness of all human life. 

“Hey, everyone. Welcome to SBSK, the Youtube channel where you’ll meet friends who live with many different conditions.

“While watching these videos you’ll notice one thing. Although humans are incredibly diverse, we all have so much in common. So, without further hesitation, let’s meet today’s friend.”

These are the words of Chris Ulmer, a 20-something special education teacher who has devoted himself to travelling the globe and talking with people who are facing severe physical and/or intellectual disabilities.

He not only tells their story, but, like a modern-day Mr. Rogers, he makes clear that those he interviews are special, that they are worthy of friendship and respect.

The two- to 20-minute videos are not always easy to watch. At least not at first.

Avery is a teenage girl with cerebral palsy.

“What’s the most difficult thing about being you?” Chris asks.

Avery thinks for a moment, smiles wide and responds, “I don’t have any [difficulties].”

“A lot of people say she’s an angel, and I actually believe that,” her father says.

Another smile from his daughter who is squeezed up next to him. “I never say a mean thing,” she says.

“Why not?” Chris asks from off camera.

“Because, I’m a nice person!”

“I think a misconception is that she can’t talk, or talks very little,” Avery’s sister says as she takes a place next to her. “When she first meets them, she’s pretty shy. But then you get sassy once you get to know them, don’t you?”

“Yeah!”

“Do you sometimes feel shy?” Chris asks.

“Yeah.”

“Do you feel shy because you want them to like you?”

“Yeah,” she responds.

“Are you scared they may not like you?”

After a moment’s thought, she responds, “No” and laughs.

Ulmer’s vocation has taken him all over the world, meeting with people of all levels of disability. Many are non-verbal, and communicate with a look, movement or sound. Yet it’s impossible not to see their affection for the young man, who makes clear that he is there not just to put a face on these special people, but to be their friend.

And it is by way of that relationship that you can clearly see God at work.  

“I was a special education teacher and had the same seven students for three years,” he said in a video question and answer interview. “In our third year, we started a blog. I wanted the community to learn about my students to better understand them, include them and have them be a part of our life in southeast Florida.”

For six months, the young teacher filmed lessons and interviewed his students.

“I thought that would be it. It wasn’t my goal to become a vlogger [video logger]. After six months we had 100,000 followers. People started emailing me and asking if I could come and interview them.”

He decided to publish a book: Special Books by Special Kids (SBSK), but after being turned down by 50 publishers, Ulmer decided to devote full time to his video series.

Today he has filmed more than 1,000 videos--190 on Youtube, and more than 600 on their original Facebook channel. He has travelled across the globe, and has been featured on an Australian version of 60-Minutes. 

One common question he asks his interviewees (or their parent), is, How do you want people to act around you?

The same answer comes again and again: “Just smile. Say hi.”

The philosophy behind the video series is that everyone has the ability to change someone’s life. It may be the life of the person he’s interviewing, but it will most certainly be those who are fortunate enough to tune in.

To see his videos, go to Youtube.com and type Chris Ulmer in the search box. On Facebook, type in Special Books by Special Kids.

 

Past Issues

April 7, 2019

March 24, 2019

March 10, 2019

Feb. 24, 2019

Feb. 10, 2019

Jan. 27, 2019

Jan. 13, 2019

Dec. 23, 2018

Dec. 9, 2018

Nov. 25, 2018

Nov. 11, 2018

Oct. 28, 2018

Oct. 14, 2018

Sept. 16, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: 2018 Golf Classic; student athletes; physically challenged; Leonard Stegman; Lesson in forgiveness; Sending us on a mission

Sept. 2, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Priest crisis; Scandal; Opioid addictions; Seeds of Suicide; Leightons; St. Anne; Vincke; seminarians; Dominican Sisters; Stewardship Conference; Dead Sea Scrolls; PSR programs; Roe V. Wade

 

August 12, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Prayer and Action; Totus Tuus; Janee Bernal; Diana Ramirez; Heidy Ramirez; Bishop Gilmore honored for 20 years ministry; suicide; contraception and abortion; Dead Sea Scrolls; Humanae Vitae; certification in youth ministry; Chuck Weber; Cathedral rectory chapel; Sister Viola Heichelbech; Adam Urban

July 15, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Immigration Protest/Rally; Faith and Light Fiesta; Seeing the Dead Sea Scrolls; Corpus Christi procession; Prayers for priests; Sisters turn 100; Michael Brungardt; Gerald Vincke; Massacre in San Salvador; Action for Alex 

 

June 3, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Parish Pray for Priestly Vocations; Appeal reaches $10 million; Gangs; Seminarians; Pam Willis; Why I like being a priest; Happy Father's Day; Patricia Lujan; Tyler and Rachel Bennett; Adoption Protection Act.

May 20, 2018
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation
KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Track meet; Beloved Sinners; Benjamin Martin retires; Smiles; Future of Fortune Telling; Hoisington mission; DofI; Getting Equipped; Spring Social; First Communion; Confirmation

May 6, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Archbishop Romero; Seeing, Touching, Tasting; Exhortation; Father Patrick Conroy; Happy Mother's Day; A child on your doorstep; Vibrant Ministries Grant; From the heart of a young father; Love Gives Life; Roman Holiday; Smartphone; retirement
Fossil Hunting

 

April 15, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Easter Vigil; Angelica Village; Colorado woman; The art of anger; Cimarron Couple; Staats; Adoption; 

Father Ultan Murphy anniversary; Coughlan; Spiritual Advisor to Hoodlums; Woman of Courage; Oration contest; Darcy Feist  

 

April 1, 2018

 

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Defending Adoption; Led by the Spirit; Knights; ABC Pregnancy Center;
Memorial of Mary; Homeless; Relics; Down syndrome abortion; Chrism Mass

 

March 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: SKYAC; Aleksandr Men; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; Uganda; School for deaf; Rannah Evetts; Oberle; Rachel and Doug Trombley; Oscar Romero; Paul VI; DACA

 

 

March 4, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Fasting for priestly vocations; Father Juan; Fasting and prayer;
Quest Weekend 2018; DACA; With God, anything is possible; Homelessness in our communities; Rhubarb, Kansas;
What's the point of fasting; Rite of Election; same-sex couples

 

Feb. 18, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Catholic Schools Week; Rachel Doll; Ellinwood; Great Bend; Garden City; Ness City; Dodge City; Sister Rita Schwarzenberger; Nigeria; Bishop Hermes; Fasting for Priestly Vocations; World Day for Consecrated Life; 50th Anniversary St. Dominic School; What will life be like in 50 years?

 

 

Feb. 4, 2018

 

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: March for Life; Tracy and Ross Smith; Adoption; Vibrant Ministries; Faith and Light;
Pro-Life; Mortal sin to discard elderly; DACA; Abortion; Dreamers; Human Trafficking

 

Jan. 21, 2018

 KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Louise Korbe; Anne Frank; Miep Gies; Home Heat; Father Solanus

 

Jan. 7, 2018

KEYWORDS, PHRASES: Good news and kingdom living; dreamers; Sister Teresa Orozco; Infant Adoption; Elderly; a moral conundrum; seminarian; feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

 

 

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