Encouragement for the Journey 7 February 2016

An inclusive Christian community in Auckland, New Zealand

Encouragement for the Journey 7 February 2016

Encouragement for the Journey

 Greenstone Moebius Band

Greetings fellow traveller,

I am writing this on Tuesday 3rd of February. I sense by the time you read this on Sunday 7th February; we will have seen a spate of protests having taken place across our nation. These will be mainly against the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), and it involves eleven Asian and Pacific-rim countries, including the United States. This agreement is being signed here in Auckland on Thursday 4th February at the Sky City Convention Centre. The negotiations for this TPPA have been shrouded in secrecy. The document is complex and opinion is divided on whether it is good or not so good for us here in New Zealand.

Another possible place for protest, could take place on the lower Te Tii Marae at Waitangi. The theme of protest this year is also the TPPA with some Maori saying that in accordance with the Treaty of Waitangi, Maori should have been consulted at the negotiation stage of the TPPA and not kept in the dark.

It is important that in any democracy, the voice of the people is heard, with people having a right to protest, in ways, which are peaceful without violence to people or property.

I am sure you have your own thoughts and opinions on such protests. At different moments in our world’s history, individual leaders of the Christian Church have been at the forefront of protest; from William Wilberforce (Politician and Evangelical Christian – abolition of slavery), Martin Luther King Jr (Baptist Minister – Civil Rights Movement) and Bishop Desmond Tutu – Anglican Bishop and Anti – Apartheid Campaigner). I leave you with this quote:

“One has not only a legal, but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.” Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from the Birmingham Jail

An important question, which only as individuals may we answer, should the Christ follower be involved in peaceful protest? If yes, what are the issues we may engage in? And, what is a right and peaceful way to protest?

Meanwhile Peace

Alf