Jesus does not want children to suffer.
Yet today, and every day, they do. More than 1.7 billion of them, in every country and every community, experience violence every year.
You will know of a child who has been or is being abused, exploited, neglected, or experiencing another form of violence. And people in your faith community will know children experiencing this. Staying silent should not be an option for people of faith.
Jesus was clear in his commitment to recognising and valuing the image of God in every person – never more so than the most vulnerable, children.
Our prayer is that this Advent these few simple resources will provide you with ways to help your faith communities become more aware of the violence that is happening to children, and encourage them to start breaking the silences that have surrounded those forms of violence against children, whether they are in their neighbourhood or further afield in the global community.
Each theme offers an alternative that speaks to the need for us to break silences around violence against children. These themes offer a more challenging look at Advent that moves beyond the romanticised images of Christmas to provoke thinking.
Advent One: Hope – Hopelessness
Advent Two: Peace - Violence
Advent Three: Joy – Anxiety
Advent Four: Love – Indifference
Advent Five: Christmas Day