Why do Deaf people need Deaf churches?

Deaf people need Deaf churches because Deaf reaching Deaf for Christ is at the heart of everything we do at DOOR. Our church planting ministry, also known as 2-by-2, consists of pairs of Deaf leaders going out to evangelize, disciple and plant Deaf churches.

There are three common types of church services in the Deaf community: interpreted services, Deaf churches supported by hearing churches, and independent Deaf churches.

Interpreted services consist of Deaf people being integrated into the hearing services, receiving access to the sermon, worship and prayers through sign language interpreters.

A Deaf church supported by a hearing church typically receives the use of a room in the hearing church building, receives supervision from leaders in the hearing church, and more. Services are often patterned after hearing churches, and the hearing leaders supervising are often unfamiliar with the Deaf culture and language.


An independent Deaf church is completely run by Deaf leaders, who find their own building (or an open space under a tree or a member’s home) for the congregants. These types of churches often look different from the typical church service, having been adapted to better fit the Deaf culture and language.

DOOR believes that the best place for Deaf people to grow and use their spiritual gifts is within the independent Deaf church. Deaf people are part of people groups with rich language and culture, and they flourish in churches reflecting that language and culture. With no language or cultural barriers, they can steward their spiritual gifts and thrive as members of the body of Christ.