“Listening Leadership” – LUCSA Theme 2019-2020.
LUCSA Message regarding Gender Based Violence.
Voices of the survivors and victims of Gender Based Violence over the years were generally muted either due to the stigma associated with it. In some instances these voices were silenced by the fear that nobody would believe them due to the “power” that the perpetrators seemed to command. Similarly in the event that the perpetrators were associated with powerful institutions, survivors and victims of Gender Based Violence were made to feel powerless and thus opted for silence.
The above scenario therefore emboldened the perpetrators to act with utmost impunity. E.g., in Mozambique, a few weeks ago, three soldiers were seen “shepherding” to death an unclothed woman in broad day light! In South Africa incidents of infanticide and femicide have become a “regular” feature in the news bulletins!
With these resources we as the sub-regional expression of the LWF, want to be on the side of the survivors and victims of the GBV. We acknowledge that the pain these indignities are graphited in their psyches, visibly or invisibly. At times their silent pain seems to be caught in invisible barbwire. We also would want to offer requisite support to the perpetrators to realize the gravity of their actions and signal to them that help is available for them as well.
The LUCSA sub-region commits to join the ecumenical voices as well actions as the broad civil society movements in the drive to highlight the seriousness of the GBV. Our Lord Jesus Christ was always found on the side of those whose voices were ignored by their societies. We therefore urge the LUCSA member churches to amply raise their voices against GBV and provide much needed support for the victims and the survivors. LUCSA supports the Thursday in Black Campaign, advocate and works hard towards a world without rape and violence.
Rev Dr DP Tswaedi
(LUCSA Executive Director).