Why did I select the name “Signs Unseen” for this blog and discussion? Two reasons:
–“signs unseen” refers to the posts and responses on this blog by users of American Sign Language that occur in written English. Although they exist here in one language, behind them, there are signs unseen that are the expression of thoughts from another language. Reading through the English to see the ASL may be necessary at times
–“signs unseen” also refers to the scarcity of theological discourse from Deaf perspectives. While one can find various resources on ‘starting ministry with Deaf people,’ ‘saving Deaf souls,’ and ‘religious interpreting’ I’ve not found a great deal of resources that engage Deaf culture and religion at a scholarly level.
-“signs” is often used in theological discourse to talk of “signs and wonders” that indicate the presence of the divine in our lives. That we overlook these signs and wonders in the busy rush of our lives is a persistent problem. The presence of the divine in the lives of Deaf people is also something that is frequently overlooked. Whether it’s a misguided missional stance of hearing people to “bring God into the lives of Deaf people” (as if God isn’t already working in our lives!) or an assumption among Deaf people that “religion is part of the hearing world, not ours,” there are important “signs unseen” that need to be made visible and discussed.