Striving for home: Deaf Community tours Globe Life Field

North Texas Catholic
(May 8, 2023) Local

people with baseball field in background

Rangers sign language interpreter Sid Johnson, right, leads a tour of Globe Life Field for the Fort Worth Diocese's Deaf Ministry, on Saturday, May 06, 2023 in Arlington. The tour is one of many group activities the Deaf Ministry hosts to build their community among members. (NTC/Ben Torres)

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ARLINGTON — The Deaf Community of the Diocese of Fort Worth is often found at Mass or special religious events, but on May 6, the Deaf Community toured some of the hallowed ground of baseball: Globe Life Field in Arlington, home of the Texas Rangers.

According to Connie Martin, coordinator of Deaf Ministry for the Diocese of Fort Worth, the tour was scheduled to build community within the group. The Rangers provided a Deaf interpreter, Sid Johnson, who gave the participants a 2½-hour tour of the retractable roof stadium, which opened in 2020.

Martin listed highlights of the visit included seeing the large collection of Rangers memorabilia in the booth of Chuck Morgan, the club’s public address announcer; visiting an owner’s suite; and learning how the stadium’s architecture includes historical objects such as the foul posts and scoreboard from the original Arlington Stadium.

The next day, the Deaf Community gathered at a church home: St. Rita Parish in Fort Worth, where a special Deaf Community Mass and social is held on the first Sunday of each month from September through May at 2 p.m. The sacrament of reconciliation is usually offered before the Mass.

The Deaf Ministry Program in the Diocese of Fort Worth includes interpreted Masses, religious education programs, retreats, and other spiritual events to provide Deaf and Hard of Hearing persons and their family members access to all aspects of the Catholic Church and parish life.

Many diocesan special events, such as the priestly ordination scheduled May 20, have Deaf interpretation on the livestream.

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