The 2016 International Day of Peace resource from UnitingJustice focuses on three building blocks for peace. Three case examples highlight ways that the Uniting Church is working in partnership with others to address gender inequality, take action on climate injustice and seek nuclear disarmament. Through addressing these injustices, we move closer to reaching a just peace. This resource includes theological reflection, worship resources, and action ideas for activities in support of peace with justice.
One of these is Gender Justice.
Inclusive Language – Watch Your Language Resource
Beyond Violence – Assembly Resource
Domestic and Family Violence (DFV) is one of the greatest challenges we face in Australia, with one woman a week killed by a former husband or partner.
This Assembly ‘Beyond Violence’ resource has been created to help members of congregations and communities begin a time of talanoa (conversation) with their people to raise awareness, understand what DFV is and begin to educate themselves in how they can respond to and support survivors.
The resource has been developed in response to the 15th Assembly resolution on Domestic and Family Violence which reaffirmed our commitment to addressing DFV.
Beyond Violence Resource – UCA Assembly
Go to the UCA National Assembly page to view and download this resource – https://uniting.church/dfv/
Thursdays in Black
The “Thursdays in Black” campaign, through the simple gesture of wearing black on Thursdays, promotes an end to violence against women and girls. It is a united global expression of the desire for safe communities where we can all walk safely without fear of being raped, shot at, beaten up, verbally abused and discriminated against due to our gender or sexual orientation.
Find out more about Thursdays in Black on the World Council of Churches site HERE
“Women throughout the world tend to earn less, bear the greater burden of unpaid work, be excluded from decision making, and have fewer opportunities to demonstrate their leadership potential. The work of UnitingWorld in confronting gender inequality and gender based violence in the Pacific is a significant contribution to a just peace”.
The issue of the connection between gender and violence was given international prominence in this important resolution at the United Nations in the year 2000. The Resolution on Women, Peace and Security was adopted at the Security Council resolution (S/RES/1325) 31 October 2000. The resolution reaffirms the important role of women in prevention and resolution of conflicts, peace negotiations, peace-building, peacekeeping, humanitarian response and in post-conflict reconstruction and stresses the importance of their equal participation and full involvement in all efforts for the maintenance and promotion of peace and security. Resolution 1325 urges all actors to increase the participation of women and incorporate gender perspectives in all United Nations peace and security efforts. It also calls on all parties to conflict to take special measures to protect women and girls from gender-based violence, particularly rape and other forms of sexual abuse, in situations of armed conflict. The resolution provides a number of important operational mandates, with implications for Member States and the entities of the United Nations system.
There are a number of pressing issues relating to Gender and Violence which we need to address to create a more peaceful society.
The Domestic Violence epidemic in Australia is a significant issue which is said to affect one in four Australian women. Read about it here
30th March 2016 Australia’s first royal commission into family violence has made a comprehensive 227 recommendations in its landmark report to the Victorian parliament, making it the most extensive document ever handed down on how to how to prevent and respond to the issue. It concludes 13 months of work lead by Justice Marcia Neave. Read more here:
An excerpt from the above article:
“There is no question that domestic violence happens in church communities and in “Christian” marriages. As has been made so abundantly and devastatingly clear in the ongoing work of the Royal Commission, the church is by no means immune from problems affecting the rest of society. Especially when we consider that domestic violence tends to be a “hidden” problem, taking place behind closed doors and feeding on silence and shame, it would be naïve for pastors or church members to think that this is not happening in the church. More and more stories from victims are emerging in the wake of Baird’s articles that confirm this is a real and pressing problem.
“There is no question that some biblical teachings have the potential to be abused by controlling and violent people, even if those teachings under normal circumstances are beautiful and positive. Think of the Bible’s exhortation to forgiveness, the sacredness of marriage, love of enemies, or even humility (a virtue closely related to the Bible’s notion of submission). All of these could be misused in relationships; the beauty of the ideas is not invalidated by the ways in which they can be exploited or abused.
“There is no question that all forms of emotional, psychological, verbal or physical abuse are utterly irreconcilable with a right understanding of Christian teaching. To forgive does not mean to stay in an abusive relationship. To “submit” cannot mean to stay in an abusive relationship. There are varying interpretations among Christians of the biblical passages relating to submission and headship, but not all are valid: to equate submission with control flies in the face of both the letter and the spirit of such passages. In word and deed, Jesus radically revised conventional models of power”.
The gap in pay for men and women is part of the institutionalised violence against women.
We believe that Peacemaking includes making sure we use language that respects all of us.
The Social Justice Commission has re-issued a document entitled “Watch your Language” first issued by The Participation of Women Task Group of the Synod of South Australia in 2001.
Download the “Watch Your Language” PDF 2022 edition HERE
Given the renewed emphasis on the problem of gender based violence in Australia, you may wish to consider making the commitment to wear black on Thursdays too. The Social Justice Unit has “Thursdays in Black” badges. Contact us for yours!
16 days of Activism against Gender Based Violence Campaign
From 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to 10 December, Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign is a time to galvanize action to end violence against women and girls around the world. Read more by clicking the link