Danijela Schubert was among 40 Christian women’s leaders who met with Australian politicians on June 15, 2021 to draw attention to the plight of the world’s poor, particularly in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Schubert, member of the Discipleship Ministries Team for women in ministry at the South Pacific Division of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, joined the delegation of women’s leaders from churches and faith-based organizations who traveled to Parliament House in Canberra for the Micah Australia initiative.
The women spoke with senior government ministers and Members of Parliament from both major political parties, highlighting the “vaccine access gap” between richer and poorer countries and the knock-on impacts of the pandemic on the world's lower-income nations: rising poverty, famine, and the further marginalization of vulnerable groups.
Schubert said it was a fantastic experience that brought together influential Christian women leaders who otherwise may not have had an opportunity to meet, network, energize each other, and work together for a higher goal.
“Although from different Christian denominations, organizations, and states of Australia, we were in one spirit to bring to those who make decisions and influence government policies an important message,” she said.
“We were there to thank them for their good work and to bring to their attention the needs of the poor. That we were there in person, taking time to visit with them, connect, and as one speaking for the needs of others, was a great testimony about the love of Jesus that compels us to do good.”
Schubert said the politicians she spoke with were grateful for the good work churches are doing in the community.
“They urged us to continue doing the good work. Most agreed with the calls to make the Australian government more generous in helping those less fortunate around the world.”
The delegation impressed upon the political leaders that the moral, health, and economic case all point toward Australia and other wealthy nations continuing to increase their efforts to help end COVID for all.
“With worldwide deaths reaching over 10,000 per day, this pandemic is far from over, with the worst now hitting low- and middle-income countries in South America and Asia, and fears rising at the possibility of a more contagious third-wave in the African continent,” Melinda Cousins, Director of Ministries for the Baptist Churches of South Australia, said.
“At the same time, a vaccine access gap has rapidly opened up between richer and poorer nations, which is not only morally indefensible but an inequity that is perpetuating the pandemic.
“As leaders, our collective voice can make a difference. And while our world is facing a tremendous challenge, we are here today to display hopeful action — encouraging our politicians that Australia can continue to be a part of that solution at this devastating time.”