What We’re Grateful For in 2019

Gratitude is not so much a feeling but a practice–an important one, particularly in times when so little seems to be aligning with our hopes for the world. Even so, we can find hope in unexpected places. Here is what we are giving thanks for this month at Faith in Women. 

We are inspired by the first ever Daring Compassion: Movement Chaplaincy Training that is taking place right now. Activists, religious leaders, and other justice-inspired people from around the country are participating in a 12-week online learning program designed to equip individuals to provide emotional and spiritual care within our movements for social change. This course is co-instructed by Hilary Allen and friend of Faith in Women Micky ScottBey Jones, both from the Faith Matters Network. To learn more about the training and get updates on future trainings, visit the Movement Chaplaincy Training website. 

November 13th was Contraception Access Day, and we’re saying #ThxBirthControl all month long. From regulating menstrual cycles and easing painful periods to preventing unintended pregnancies and reducing risk of gynecological cancer, access to reliable forms of contraception is essential for gender equality, bodily autonomy, family planning, and reproductive dignity. We are also thankful to our partners that provide sexuality education to ensure every person has the information they need to make informed decisions about their bodies, families, and futures. 

Everyday the Jackson Women’s Health Center, also known as the “Pink House” and the only abortion provider in Mississippi,” is targeted by anti-choice extremists who attempt to intimidate staff and patients with shouting and even bullhorns. In response the Jackson City Council voted 3-1 to enforce a noise ordinance that in addition to banning the use of amplifiers and speakers, provides a protective “bubble” both for the clinic and for those entering its doors. The Jackson Free Press covered the specifics of the new ordinance which went into effect October 1st. 

Judge Carlton Reeves, nominated by President Obama in 2010 to the position of district judge for the Southern District of Mississippi, has twice struck down legislation that would severely limit–or even outright ban–access to abortion in the state. In 2018 he struck down a fifteen-week ban, and this year he blocked an even more restrictive six-week ban. Judge Reeves said the six-week ban “smacks of defiance to this court.” 

And, we are grateful to our Faith in Women partners, members, supporters, and activists. Faith in Women started as an experimental project in 2015, and because of your support and perseverance, our organization has grown into a vibrant spiritual force for change in our state and beyond. Thank you, thank you!