Blue Mountains News
Christian Women Leaders United in Historic Visit to Canberra Advocating for Global Concerns
Micah Australia Executive Director Tim Costello facilitated the coalition group not only to bring Christian women leaders together with a unified voice, but also to address recent concerns of a culture of bullying, harassment and the unequal treatment of women in Canberra. The delegation includes representatives from Hillsong Church, Baptist Church, Citipointe Church, The Grainery, Anglican Deaconess Ministries and The Salvation Army.
“Throughout the world and here at home, there is a growing concern with attitudes that have too often maligned and restricted the voice of women and their leadership,” said Kate Harrison Brennan, CEO of Anglican Deaconess Ministries. “We see this as an opportunity to encourage our female representatives for their leadership but also to keep crucial justice issues, like poverty elimination and refugees on their agenda.”
As part of the trip, the Christian women leaders’ delegation will meet key Ministers and Shadow Ministers at Parliament House. They are also hoping to put forward the case for continued support for the overseas aid budget and supporting some of the poorest and most vulnerable families around the world.
With only 60 days to go until Universal Children’s Day, the leaders will also be advocating for the release of children and their families from Nauru, joining over 100,000 who are calling for Kids Off Nauru.
“This feels like a significant moment,” said 2016 Olympic finalist Eloise Wellings, who will accompany the group. “Too often, the church is known for its internal disagreements that become public, but to have women leaders joining together from across the denominational spectrum shows a significant act of unity and one that we hope will be an encouragement to the government and opposition.”
Costello, who will lead Micah’s annual conference, Voices for Justice, again this year from 1-4 December in Canberra, also sees this as a unique moment both to address cultural divisions and to unite women leaders who are influencing the country as Christians of influence.
“This visit brings representatives across the church together to advocate for some of the most vulnerable citizens in the world by sharing our vision for a more generous and fair Australia,” Costello said. “Social justice is at the heart of our mission, and we believe at the core of who we are as Australians. We also want to take this opportunity to thank these politicians for all their hard work and their ongoing efforts to serve their local communities.”
Christian women leaders making the trip include:
Donna Crouch, Hillsong Community Engagement Pastor
Eloise Wellings, Olympic Games runner and Founder of Love Mercy NGO
Colonel Julie Campbell, National Advocate for Gender Equity, The Salvation Army
Leigh Ramsey, Senior Pastor Citipointe Church and Founder of ITS NOT OK Projects and She Rescue Home Cambodia
Catherine Thambiratnam, Hillsong Church Aid and Development
Sue Irwin, Senior Pastor, The Grainery Church
Vikki Howorth, Social Justice Pastor, Seaforth Baptist Church
Kate Harrison Brennan, CEO, Anglican Deaconess Ministries
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