Special Needs Kristen Harnly

Kristen Harnly

Kristen HarnlyEmail: kharnly@pcanet.org
Home Church: Tenth Presbyterian Church
City/State: Havertown, Pennsylvania

Kristen moved to Philadelphia after receiving her Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy from Medical College of Georgia (now Georgia Regents University). She worked as an occupational therapist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and in early intervention. She met her husband at Tenth Presbyterian Church, where she has worshipped and served since 1995. They have two children and live in Havertown, PA, a suburb of Philadelphia. Her family enjoys music, playing games, and beach trips together. Their lives are affected by several hidden disabilities.

Why are you passionate about disability ministry?
In a time of great difficulty, God brought encouragement through a biblical view of disability from reading Same Lake, Different Boat. The experiences in my own life and family enabled me to serve others at Tenth Church several years later. My experiences have given me an understanding of the needs families face and how important it is that the church come alongside to support and care for individuals and families. In a Word-focused church, modifying Christian education materials to make the Gospel accessible to all has been a priority.

What topics in the arena of special needs ministry are of most interest to you?
So far, my main areas of focus and interest have been ministering to the family, autism and the church, and Christian education.

What is your heartfelt prayer for our churches, when it comes to special needs ministry?
My prayer is that our churches would grow into complete bodies, connected to Christ the head, and to each of their parts in life-giving and receiving ways. May special needs ministries be used to break down the barriers that exist within churches and in outreach to the community so that the Gospel and blessings of body life will be accessible to all.

Favorite Food:
Anything chocolate!

Favorite Book:
Same Lake, Different Boat for special needs ministry and The Chronicles of Narnia to enjoy with my family.

Favorite Quotation:
“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.” – C.S. Lewis