Local church leaders joined with candidates to pray for them and encourage them to champion a generous and effective aid program that fights poverty in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.
As we stood in the forecourt of Northside Baptist Church at Crows Nest, various church leaders from the Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Churches of Christ, Independent, Presbyterian and Uniting churches made a united prayer for the gathering, for the candidates and the world’s most needy.
The hopeful candidates included the Australian Greens candidate Arthur Chesterfield-Evans, Christian Democrats candidate Silvana Nero, Independent candidate Stephen Ruff represented by Ted Mack, Liberal candidate Trent Zimmerman, Sustainable Population candidate William Bourke and Palmer United candidate Robert Marks.
The morning tea saw North Sydney Christians standing united in support of justice for the world’s most needy. During the gathering Micah’s National Coordinator Ben Thurley shared the importance of Australia’s aid efforts and the substantial impact it has in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Candidates were encouraged to hear that last year alone Australian aid helped provide access to safe drinking water for 2.9 million more people, enable 1.4 million more children to enrol in school and ensure nearly 900,000 additional births were supported by a skilled birth attendant.
We also encouraged the hopeful candidates to make a stand for Australian aid if elected.
“If we want to build a more just, peaceful and sustainable world in which everyone can truly prosper, then the next Member for North Sydney will not only want to rise to all the challenges of representing the electorate, but to also helping our Parliament meet the big global challenges of poverty, inequality and climate change,” said Mr Thurley during the event.
Afterwards Church leaders echoed these sentiments in their personal discussions with the by-election candidates over morning tea where they expressed the view that Australian aid is one significant way we help contribute a better world for all.
The events that Micah host with various Christian churches display to our elected officials the broadness of our movement, and express the view that Australian aid’s contribution is not only right, it is essential. The North Sydney morning tea goes a small way to keeping aid on the agenda. It is about taking the opportunity during the by-election to let the prospective parliamentarians know that we’re for Australian aid.
Benn Banasik is the Political and Campaigns Coordinator for Micah Australia.