Reconciliation as Truth and Action
Truth Telling to #ChangeTheHeart of Australia
Brooke Prentis is a Wakka Wakka woman and an Aboriginal Christian Leader. Brooke is a speaker, writer, community pastor, and advocate, and is the Aboriginal Spokesperson for Common Grace and Coordinator of the Grasstree Gathering.
Welcome to Common Grace’s National Reconciliation Week Series!
Together we are going to take the journey through National Reconciliation Week 2019 – Grounded in Truth: Walk Together with Courage. Last year you joined us on the journey of Reconciliation as Friendship – and if you are new to Common Grace you can check out last year’s series here.
This year we are inviting you on the journey of Reconciliation as Truth and Action.
Together we’ll hear in story, prayer, and action from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Christian Leaders and some Non-Aboriginal Christian friends. Together we’ll become grounded in truth of Stolen Land, Stolen Generations, Stolen Wages, Stolen Lives – Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, Stolen Lives – Close the Gap, and Massacres. Together we will walk together in courage through the true history of Australia and how that impacts Australia in 2019.
We started the journey of Truth Telling through answering Aunty Jean Phillips call to our nation to prayer through the Jan 26 #ChangeTheHeart prayer services. We continue the journey of Truth Telling through this National Reconciliation Week. Our prayer is that through Truth and Action we can continue to #ChangeTheHeart of Australia as we seek Jesus and Justice. To #ChangeTheHeart of Australia we need you to show courage – one way to show courage is to pray the prayers we send. A further step of courage is to take the actions we suggest. Another further step is to share this truth, prayer, and action with your friends, family, and church.
Truth brings healing, hope, and freedom. Taking the action to bring about justice brings healing. In Jesus we find hope. In the cross we can find true freedom. My prayer this National Reconciliation Week is that we find the courage to walk together as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and Non-Indigenous peoples, and through walking together, each of us, as followers of Jesus, see clearly our role in being truth tellers, prayers, and action takers and together we may just see healing, hope, and freedom in these lands now called Australia through achieving Reconciliation in our lifetime.
The Redfern Prayer
by Uncle Ray Minniecon
Pastor Raymond Minniecon is a descendant of the Kabi Kabi nation and the Gurang Gurang nation of South-East Queensland, and a descendant of the South Sea Islander people. He is a prominent Aboriginal Christian Leader in Australia with a long history working across Aboriginal justice issues through business and ministry.
God of our Dreaming. Father of all our Aboriginal nations in Australia. You have lived among us since time immemorial. We have always known You. You gave this land to our Aboriginal nations. You have not dispossessed us nor destroyed us.
People from other lands, who do not understand our unique culture, our unique lifestyle and our unique heritage have come and destroyed much of our way of life. Many of these people from other lands now want to understand and reconcile with us.
But for many of us Aboriginal people, we find this reconciliation business a little difficult.
Too many of our children are still in jails.
Too many of our children are still living in sub-standard housing.
Too many of our mothers are living on the streets or in refuges.
Too many of our children are still uneducated.
Too many of our children have no land and no community to go back to.
Too many of our children have not got good opportunities for good employment.
Too many of our children are living in extremely unhealthy environments.
Too many of our children are living among violence and abuse.
Too many of our children are dying to drugs and other soul-destroying substances.
God our Dreaming and Creator of our people, we sometimes feel overwhelmed by these things. Many of us feel like we are refugees in our own land.
Today we are coming together again on one of our battlegrounds to cry out to You for mercy and justice for our children, for our families and for our land.
We pray that more resources will be given to our local community organisations to help us grow healthy and strong.
We pray that the peoples from other lands will be given a heart of flesh instead of a heart of stone so that they can understand us and support us properly.
We pray that your Spirit will help and encourage us to grow good strong Aboriginal leaders.
Father we want to grow strong and healthy again in our own land. We want to take our rightful place in our land and make our contribution to the re-building of our families, our communities and our nation.
Please hear our cries for justice. We ask these mercies in the name of Your Son.
Truth in Action
Truth starts with knowledge. What would Australia look like, sound like, act like if every person living in these lands and waters understood what “Australia” looked like before colonisation and if we had a shared understanding of the true history of 1788? What would the Australian church look like, sound like, act like, if every Christian knew about God’s appointed custodians and God’s appointed boundaries and viewed colonisation through the Creator’s eyes - the shooting and disregard of peoples made in His image, the destruction of the environment, the commencement of deforestation in Australia.
Will you take action to see how we could change the view of Australia and Australian Christians?
Purchase a copy of the AIATSIS map of Indigenous Australia and display it in your church.
Small $9.95, Medium $14.95, Large $24.95
Watch SBS series First Australians: Episode 1 - They have come to stay.
This post is part of our National Reconciliation Week 2019 series where we are together discovering Reconciliation as Truth and Action.