WATCH: Boy Reunited With Buddy at Church’s Special Needs Program After 15 Months Apart


A little boy who was unable to attend in-person fellowship at his church in Illinois has gone viral as his emotional reunion with friends is tugging at all of our heartstrings.

11-year-old Grady Witkowski loves his faith community at Liquid Church in Parsippany, New Jersey, but was unable to attend in-person services with his family for 15 months amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“We drive a really far way because they make a place for any child – no matter what their needs or what their disability is – they make a way for those children to attend,” mom Erin Witkowski told Fox News of their well-loved church. The family drives an hour and a half from their home in New York to Liquid Church just to experience the special fellowship Grady finds there.

Liquid Church is Grady’s “favorite place in the entire world” and serves him well as it is equipped with a “thriving special needs ministry,” something which must indeed be a massive blessing for many parents and children.

The church’s Buddy Program has been a godsend for little Grady, who has Down syndrome.


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A post shared by Erin Witkowski (@skifam)

“Every child with special needs that goes there gets a buddy to be with them during children’s service,” Mrs. Witkowski explained. “It gives them the opportunity to be with the other children, have a great time, worship and learn.”

When the video of Grady’s joyful return to Liquid Church was uploaded by his mother to Instagram, it was viewed 22,000 times.

A second video uploaded to Facebook showing his tearful reunion with good friend Katy Herridge was just as emotional.

“This folks is what making a seat at the table for everyone looks like,” Mrs. Witkowski captioned the video, according to Fox. “Tears ran down to see this moment.”

“The homecoming back to Liquid Church and reuniting with his buddy Katy Herridge was surreal after a 15-month pause. It is his favorite place in the whole world because it’s a church that makes a way for him in such a wildly loving and accepting way,” she told Fox News in a phone interview after the video went viral. “To see Grady and Katy reunited in such a beautiful [way] was epic! I feel like we get a little taste of heaven on Sunday morning in the form of acceptance and inclusion.”

This church is doing a wonderful service by ministering to the hearts of all its members in a way that suits the unique way God has made each and every one of them, and the power of in-person fellowship and worship.

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