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International Women’s Day - Message from the Chief

Dear friends,

Every year, The Salvation Army Australia celebrates International Women’s Day and the achievements of women across the Army. I am proud to be part of a movement that honours and values women's contribution to society and blessed to be a part of a movement that empowers thousands of women daily.

  • To those on the frontline – the many officers, volunteers and employees who provide practical, emotional and spiritual support to those in need every day; thank you. I am grateful for your passion and commitment.

  • To the officers who have responded to this specific call to ministry and sacrificed much. Thank you, you encourage my heart.

  • To the many I work alongside daily who have taken on leadership roles here at the Army, thank you. You inspire me every day.

  • To all who champion the contribution of women inside and outside our movement, proactively seeking how to empower women and ensure their voice is heard, thank you. We need you!

General Eva Burrows, 13th General of The Salvation Army, said, “Women have the power to make a difference in their communities and the world.” And they do! Jesus interacted with women as people made in the image of God, of intrinsic value and with great capability and intelligence in an era and culture when women were generally not treated with dignity or respect within society.

On International Women’s Day, Jesus’ example and General Burrows’ words remind us of the contribution women make to our families, our communities, our world, our places of work, and our churches, and the richness and depth they add to our world, making for a more equitable society where everyone’s contribution is valued. The day is a celebration of the strength, courage, and achievements of women and the absolute criticality of women to be equal participants in society around the world. It reminds us women have the power to make a difference. It is also a reminder there is still much to be done to ensure women continue to be actively supported, empowered, valued and acknowledged.

Embracing equity and the full participation of women in all aspects of society is challenging in some parts of our world. Please pray for those women. Together, let’s look for ways to advocate for them and their desire to be educated and increasingly participate in society to be heard and valued.

General Eva Burrows believed, women are capable of incredible things, and it is up to us to ensure that we create an environment in which they can thrive.

To the women reading this, I pray you have found a community in which to thrive. I pray you feel valued for your contribution to The Salvation Army’s mission, and I pray each of us sees the essential part we play, wherever we find ourselves planted, to support one another.

God bless you each,

Colonel Winsome Merrett

Chief Secretary

8 March 2023


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