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Can you help children with autism?

A Dunkeld deacon is seeking help to research the impact of autism on children’s religious ­development.

A Dunkeld deacon is seeking help to research the impact of autism on children’s religious ­development.

Deacon Arthur Grant, who has undertaken the project as part of his studies with the Maryvale Institute in Birmingham, is asking Scottish Catholics with experience of either autism or catechesis to contribute their experiences and opinions to the research.

“Among the many challenges that can accompany a diagnosis of Autism ­Spectrum Disorder (ASD), the implications for the child’s religious and spiritual development can sometimes be overlooked,” he said.

“An estimated 300 Catholics in the Diocese of Dunkeld are diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum ­Disorder. Every individual is affected differently, but for many, attending Mass or catechism classes can present particular challenges.”

He said these challenges can include ‘sensory issues, for example noise can be physically painful, problems with unfamiliar environments and routines.

Questionnaires for parents, catechists, school teachers and clergy in Dunkeld Diocese can be downloaded from: and may be returned by email or post.

Those outside Dunkeld are invited to contribute via:


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