If your church is wanting to go deeper in their engagement with Aboriginal justice issues, we suggest some of the following steps are a great place to start.
Include and Acknowledgement of Country in your services
For churches who have just started exploring Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander justice, introducing an 'acknowledgement of country' into your services can be a great way to start that journey with your congregation.
While a Welcome to Country can only be performed by a local Aboriginal Elder, an Acknowledgement of Country which can be performed by anyone. We encourage you to personalise your own acknowledgement of country, in a manner that is approachable to your church, though our Aboriginal spokesperson Brooke Prentis has provided an acknowledgement of country you can use at the start, or during, your services:
"We would like to acknowledge, the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we gather, acknowledge, lament and pray today. They are stewards on behalf of THE ALMIGHTY CREATOR. We would also like to pay our respects to the Elders past, present and future."
Invite an Aboriginal Speaker to your church
Common Grace Aboriginal Spokesperson, Brooke Prentis, is available to speak at churches and conferences across the country. If you would like Brooke to speak, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Participate in Aboriginal Sunday
On January 26 1938, Aboriginal leaders, including William Cooper, met for a Day of Mourning, seeking equality and full citizenship...it would take another 30 years! In 1940, William Cooper asked the Australian Church to set aside the Sunday before January 26 as Aboriginal Sunday, a day for Christians to act in solidarity with Aboriginal peoples.
80 years later, Aboriginal Christian Leader Brooke Prentis is calling on individual congregations to reclaim William Cooper’s Aboriginal Sunday by asking your church to set aside time your service on the Sunday before January 26th. We produce resources for churches to include recognition of Aboriginal Sunday in their January services.
Celebrate NAIDOC Week
NAIDOC Week is an annual week-long celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, culture and achievements and is an opportunity for us to recognise the contributions that Indigenous Australians make to our country and our society. NAIDOC Week runs every year in July, with events and activities happening across the country.
Each year Common Grace produce resources for churches to celebrate during NAIDOC Week. NAIDOC Week runs over two Sundays, so set aside one of those Sundays to celebrate NAIDOC Week with your Church.
This would be a great opportunity.
Support Aboriginal Christian Ministries
Could your church potentially fundraise to resource Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ministries, churches, prison chaplains, court chaplains, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Christian Leadership Development?
If you are interested in supporting Aboriginal ministries please contact email@example.com, and we can connect you with different ministries.