Talitha cumi; Assuring Future for the Girl Child
The month of November is very important for us as we celebrate many important days such as the All Saints day (Nov. 1), World Sunday school week (Nov.5), Unity Week, Our Harvest Festival 2017, and most significantly a week dedicated to our Girl Children. This is undeniably a time to give thanks to God almighty for all the magnificent blessings he has showered upon us throughout the past one year. Let us enthusiastically thank God through the harvest festival.
This month let us together dedicate and discuss on protecting our girl children. CSI‟s commitment to the Girl Child, both on the theme “Little One, Arise!” (2000-2010) and “Assure my future” (2014 onwards) are examples of the seriousness with which Church is committed to the „little ones‟ and vulnerable girls and women whom God had created in God‟s own image. Gen 1: 27, Gal 3: 28,Acts 10: 34 says, all men and women, whether young or old, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, high or low, upper or lower, boy or girl are one and equal in the sight of God. We all are aware of this but the patriarchal values within us never allow digesting these things. Women‟s life and happiness depends on her faithfulness towards her husband, father and children. As it is said, from womb to tomb she belongs to someone and her worth is measured through the ability to produce children and that too male children. Even though there is a great change in these thinking, it still persists. There used to believe that „bringing up a girl child is like watering the neighbor‟s plant‟. So only after the sex determination test, the female fetus and female infants are murdered. Girl children are murdered by their parents and relatives through different ways. Though this brutal activity is banned, it still continues. Some of the alarming and disturbing facts published in a recent statistics by CRY (Child Rights and You) an NGO on Girl Child says that, Out of 12 million girl children 1 million did not see their first birthday, out of 6 girls 1 undergoes sexual violence in her early age, 53% girl children did not get their basic education, girls in India have 61% higher mortality than boys at the age of 1-4 and many more. The issue of girl child rights and protection in India is a very serious concern. Being home to more than one third of the 10 million child brides in the world, India has one of the highest numbers of girls forced into marriage before the legal age of 18. We need to respond, why are we not able to be responsive? Assuring a future for the girl child need individual, societal and ecclesial transformation. Jesus has come to us for that. Girl child/ women are life givers and we have no right to underestimate them. It is our duty to assure their future, keep them safe and give education, human dignity, social status and the space and opportunity to live. To quote CRY, it says, „We want to be part of a world where girls are celebrated.Where they are treated equally, with love and respect. What is urgently required in society today is a change of attitude. Girls must be given the same opportunities and protection as boys, and must be treated at par. A girl’s childhood can and must be preserved, cherished, nurtured and protected. Because she has the right to survive, develop, be protected and participate in decisions that impact her life.
Jesus not only instructs us, but inspires us to care and work for the rejected and the alienated. This theme is to refresh ourselves, to put our faith in action to provide assurance and work for the upliftment and well-being of the Girl Children.
Always remember that, Girl Children are God‟s special gift to us. Life givers‟ are special and are not gifted to all. So be proud, being the parent of a girl child. Love,Care and live for them. Let us all join together and say Talitha Cumi‟ (Daughter arise) together with our Christ…
This month as we celebrate our harvest festival, let us be thankful to God. I urge all our dear members to make it a huge success by your sincere participation in bringing things for the food stalls, for auction and in partaking. Let this time of thanksgiving be memorable and fruitful for a healthy start into the New Year. Let this time rewards you with all countless blessings from above. “He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha Cumi!” (Which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”)”. Mk.5:41
God bless you all!