The United Church of Christ has been a leader among churches on issues of justice related to women. It’s in our DNA, you might say.
Yes, we were the first Christian denomination to ordain a woman when Antoinette Brown was ordained in 1853. But even before then, women who were members of our congregations lived their faith through advocacy to end the practice of slavery in the United States, to establish homes for poor women, and support educational opportunities for women. Later, they were active in securing women’s right to vote and to work for fair wages.
From the mid-1900’s to the present day, the UCC has continued this legacy through its advocacy for reproductive justice for all women, its call to end violence against women, its critical work on gender inclusive language as an issue of justice for all humankind, and its insistence on connecting the realities of sexism and racism. And more.
This work is local and global, personal and community-wide. It comes from a faith which affirms the full personhood of women as created in the image of God and included in the ministry of Jesus as partners, disciples and bearers of the Good News.
Update for Mother's Day 2013
Mother’s Day – it wasn’t always about sentimentality
Mother's Day was originally founded as an antiwar rallying cry by Unitarian Julia Ward Howe. This history reminds us that Mother’s Day is more than a day for flowers and pancakes. It’s a call to honor the resiliency of all those who mother, especially those who bear the brunt of hurtful policies or who are weighed down by stigma in our culture. It’s opportunity to take action to create the conditions so that all families can thrive. Our ecumenical partners in the UUA have some great resources for use in your congregation. Join them in making “Mama’s Day Our Way” a rallying cry for justice.
Here’s a thought provoking blog entitled “Mother's Day for the Rest of Us” which reflects on all those whose lives will not be found in the greeting card racks of Mother’s Day cards.
Finally, consider getting involved in a global initiative for maternal and childhood nutritional support which Church Women United, Bread for the World and many other women’s groups are supporting. Join the 1,000 Days campaign for maternal health.
Rev. Lois M. Powell Executive Associate to the General Minister and President and Minister for Leadership Development and Diversity Office of the Executive Minister Office Of General Ministries 700 Prospect Ave. Cleveland,Ohio 44115 216-736-2113 firstname.lastname@example.org
Ms. Kristen Walling Washington Office Intern Program Team Based in Washington, DC Justice And Witness Ministries 700 Prospect Ave Cleveland,Ohio 44115 202-543-1517 email@example.com