This year marks the 50th anniversary of the New Zealand Council of Christian Social Services (NZCCSS), who work tirelessly for a just and compassionate society in Aotearoa New Zealand. On 20 February, the NZCCSS will mark this anniversary on the United Nations World Day of Social Justice, with a vigil from 12:30-5:15pm at St Paul’s Cathedral in Wellington.
If you are in Wellington, I urge you get along to the vigil at St Paul’s, or you may wish to support the kaupapa of the event with a service at your own church sometime between 17-24 February.
On the International day of social justice, we must also acknowledge that there is still much work to do to protect the thousands of Kiwi families affected by family violence, one of the biggest social issues facing New Zealanders today.
As a White Ribbon Ambassador, I am part of a network of Kiwis – like NZCCSS – that are working hard to be agents for change in our communities. I am bringing the message to our Church and those in the wider community that family violence is not OK.
I encourage you to keep the children and women, and sometimes men, affected by family violence in your prayers this 20 February, United Nations World Day of Social Justice.
For 50 years, NZCCSS has been an agent for change through its research and tireless work advocating for better government policies, more funding and better living conditions for those on the margins of society. I’d like to commend the current NZCCSS team and all of those who came before, for their work which has no doubt had a positive impact on the wellbeing of Kiwi children, families, older Kiwis, those living in poverty and others who often don’t have a voice.
More details about NZCCSS anniversary events, which will be held throughout 2019, will be available on their website, and I invite all Presbyterian and Uniting parishes to get alongside NZCCSS and celebrate this milestone.
Very Rev Ray Coster
White Ribbon Ambassador
Download resources from NZCCSS for worship and prayer to assist your community to celebrate 50 years of Christian churches working together for the transformation of society.
Download pdf of this message.