Across the Uniting Church, we observe a Day of Mourning on the Sunday before Australia Day (24 January) to lament the ongoing effects of the invasion and colonisation of Australia’s First Peoples.
The Day of Mourning is an observance that was endorsed at the 15th Assembly in 2018 at the request of our sisters and brothers in the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC).
The Day of Mourning worship service encourages us to pause to remember the violence and dispossession inflicted on our First Peoples, and to lament that as a Church and as Second Peoples, we were and remain complicit.
It is an opportunity for us to listen and learn of the hurt that has been passed down through generations of First Peoples and the ongoing disadvantage and injustice they still experience.
Importantly, it is an invitation to us to follow in Christ’s way of justice, healing and reconciliation, building relationships of truth and healing in our own communities and in our nation.