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Working together for gender justice through health

Lydia and Marion

Lydia Mwaniki

When my mother was pregnant, she prayed that if her baby was a boy, she would dedicate him fully to God’s service. Sadly for her, I was born a girl and she was a little disappointed.

Rev Dr Lydia Mwaniki

Rev Dr Lydia Mwaniki has spent her life assuaging her mother’s disappointment. In her role as the Director of Theology, Family Life and Gender Justice at the All Africa Conference of Churches (AACC), she is a gender justice champion in Kenya and across the African Union.
 
Lydia’s is a prominent voice on gender-based violence, advocating for women’s access to health services including sexual and reproductive health in church and community. As an ordained priest, she ably counters biblical interpretations which reinforce gender disparities in church and society.
 
It is within Lydia’s remit at the AACC to promote gender equality within families: between women and men, girls and boys. Who else could be better placed to ensure that all are worthy of belonging?
Marion Chatterley

In 1986, Rev Marion Chatterley met a homeless young man in Edinburgh who had drunk bleach to cleanse himself of his recent HIV diagnosis.

That encounter inspired Marion to find work with an HIV prevention initiative, working with street prostitutes. After her ordination in 1998 she became chaplain at Milestone House, a specialist hospice and care facility for people living with HIV.

Many of the early diagnoses of HIV in Edinburgh were among women, many infected through a positive partner. Women having the power to negotiate safe-sex is a constant challenge both in Scotland and globally.

As a woman priest, working with some of the most vulnerable people in Scotland, Marion is far from a typical priest. But, she has had the privilege of speaking with patients about spirituality in those vulnerable moments between life and death.

I offer unconditional care and respect to people who often find themselves disrespected and I try to offer people a glimpse of God's love for them.

Rev Marion Chatterley