In July 2012 the members of the 13th Assembly of the Uniting Church, meeting in Adelaide, listened to members of the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) talk about the effects of the federal Stronger Futures legislation (and the Intervention before that) on their communities.
The Assembly members were moved by the stories of harm and exclusion and responded in two ways. The first was to ‘down tools’ and make a silent procession through the streets to the South Australian Parliament to pray and sing in a public vigil of lament. The second was to adopt a resolution calling on the church to engage in a week of prayer and fasting for justice for the First Peoples.
The week, set down for 17-23 March 2014, included a public prayer vigil outside Parliament House in Canberra led by the UAICC chairperson and the president. Presbyteries and congregations planned local vigils during the week and special services on the Sunday, and many Uniting Church members travelled to Canberra to be a part of this historic public witness to justice and reconciliation.
The heart of the week was a nationwide movement of Uniting Church individuals, small groups and congregations exercising a daily practice of prayer and fasting.
Full details are online at the Assembly A Destiny Together site.