National Reconciliation Week 27 May to 3 June 2022
National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time of coming together to recognise shared experiences in Australia. To acknowledge the shared history of Australia there must be an aspect of truth telling. This involves acknowledging Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as the First Peoples of Australia. NRW presents opportunities to recognise and learn about the longstanding cultures of First Peoples. Encouraging First and Second Peoples to come together to learn from one another and celebrate their interconnectedness. The dates for National Reconciliation Week are the same each year 27 May to 3 June. These dates commemorate the significant milestones of reconciliation in Australia the successful 1967 referendum and the High Court Mabo decision respectively.
The theme from NRW 2022 is “Be Brave. Make Change.” The theme is a challenge to all Australians to Be Brave and tackle the unfinished business of reconciliation. To Make Change that genuinely benefits all Australians. In line with National Reconciliation Week the Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of South Australia encourages the celebration of Reconciliation Sunday on the first Sunday in NRW. In 2022 this falls on Sunday 29 May 2022. The Synod of South Australia has encouraged this celebration as one way of continuing to recognise the Covenant between the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC) and the Uniting Church in Australia. Reconciliation Sunday encourages us to participate in one of the major themes of our Christian faith. God was in Christ reconciling the world. We too can contribute to this reconciling by developing mutually respectful relationships between First and Second Peoples within congregations and the wider community.
Reconciliation Australia has released 19 actions to make change. These actions are available here. One of the actions is to Speak Up for Languages. Encouraging that language is intrinsic to culture and identity. To support this action Theologian in Residence Rev Dr Aunty Denise Champion, Centre for Music, Liturgy & the Art Coordinator Rev Jennifer Hughes and Mission Resourcing collaborated to release a video Call to Worship ‘Yanakanai’. The video features the Adnyamathanha language and encourages all to gather and worship the most High God together. This Reconciliation Sunday congregations are encouraged to play Yanakanai as a Call to Worship to reflect on the importance of gathering together or to be brave and attempt the Adnyamathanha language.
Below is a 2022 Reconciliation Week flyer for your congregations to use.