Reflection for International Women's Day - 8th March 2022

08-March-22

Happy International Women's Day. Events will take place all over the world today to celebrate the contribution of women to our world but it also highlights the sad fact that women are still not treated as equal with men in many spheres of life.

Today’s day is about feminism in its truest form and as Emma Watson reminded us men in her speech to the UN, if you stand for equality then you are a feminist. For equality between women and men to be realised it will take both men and women to fight for it, to demand it.

Today is a celebration of the contribution of women, the power of women, the gifts of women. A celebration of women who are powerful and fearless and strong and also a celebration of women who are shy and introverted and quiet. A celebration of women in politics and sport and art and culture and business and humanitarian work. A celebration of the powerful women in our lives that we know well and a celebration of women we have never met, a celebration of all of you sitting in classrooms listening to this. Today is a celebration of all that you will achieve when you set out into the world and make it a better place. And it is a celebration for my female colleagues who work so hard in the name of Loreto. When you look at the women in your life today, your mother, your sister, your grandmother, your aunts, your friends, your teachers, your coaches - may you be inspired to be the best person that you can be in every avenue of your life.

Today's celebration is shadowed by the situation unfolding in Ukraine. As we think of the women and children suffering there today we pray that their trauma will soon come to an end and peace will be restored. On this day it is hard not to believe that if the world were ruled by women it would be a kinder place for all.

Today we pray for a future where women and men are treated equally, where nobody suffers because of their gender and where those who want to succeed in whatever field they choose will never be held back.

As the world marks International Women's Day, we end with some words from Hilary Clinton, girls we encourage you to smash the glass ceilings, break loose those restrictive chains, face down those who try and hold you back and be the best that you are called to be.

Today, from the privilege of our safety, we pray for a good day.

Amen.

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