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The daughter of a sea captain, Lucretia Coffin spent her childhood on Nantucket Island. She was reared in the Quaker faith, unique among American religions in encouraging the equality of women. In 1811 she married James Mott and they made their home in Philadelphia. Soon she began to speak in Quaker meetings, developing confidence and eloquence that were rare at a time when women seldom spoke in public.

In the 1830s Mott advocated the radical idea that slavery was sinful and must be abolished. She was one of several American delegates to the 1840 World’s Anti-Slavery Convention in London, but the women were denied seats. The lesson was clear for Mott and young Elizabeth Cady Stanton. How could women fight for the rights of others unless they enjoyed rights of their own? In 1848, while Mott was visiting her sister in Auburn, New York, she met with Stanton and helped to plan the first woman’s rights convention. Mott delivered the opening and closing addresses at the Seneca Falls Convention, and her husband James chaired the proceedings at the Wesleyan Chapel.

Motivated by her religious convictions, Mott dedicated herself to the twin causes of antislavery and women’s rights. She harbored runaways slaves in her Philadelphia home and agitated for Negro suffrage and education when emancipation was finally won. As she wrote, spoke, and attended women’s conventions, younger feminists recognized that Mott’s early leadership had been crucial in the infancy of the women’s rights movement.

Additional Resources:Bacon, Margaret Hope. Valiant Friend: the Life of Lucretia Mott. New York, New York: Walker, 1980. NOTES: Includes index.

Cromwell, Otelia. Lucretia Mott. New York: Russell & Russell, 1971

Hare, Lloyd Custer Mayhew.The Greatest American Woman, Lucretia Mott. New York: Negro Universities Press, 1970.

Greene, Dana editor. Lucretia Mott: Her Complete Speeches and Sermons. New York: E. Mellen Press, 1980.

Palmer, Beverly Wilson, editor. Selected Letters of Lucretia Coffin Mott. Urbana, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 2001.

Slavery and “the woman question” – Lucretia Mott’s Diary of her Visit to Great Britain to Attend the World’s Anti- Slavery Convention of 1840. Edited by Frederick B. Tolles. Haverford, Pennsylvania: Friends’ Historical Association, 1952.

Discourse on Woman. Philadelphia: W.P. Kildare, 1869.

Papers 1834-1896, Swathmore College, Friends Historical Library. Swarthmore, Pennsylvania.

World Day of Prayer is a worldwide movement of Christian women of many traditions who come together to observe a common day of prayer each year, and who, in many countries, have a continuing relationship in prayer and service. It is a movement initiated and carried out by women in more than 170 countries and regions. It is a movement symbolized by an annual day of celebration – the first Friday of March – to which all people are welcome. It is a movement which brings together women of various races, cultures, and traditions in closer fellowship, understanding, and action throughout the year. Sierra Leone Philippines Lebanon Through World Day of Prayer, women around the world affirm their faith in Jesus Christ share their hopes and fears, their joys and sorrows, their opportunities and needs Through World Day of Prayer, women are encouraged to become aware of the whole world and no longer live in isolation to be enriched by the faith experience of Christians of other countries and cultures to take up the burdens of other people and pray with and for them to become aware of their talents and use them in the service of society Through World Day of Prayer, women affirm that prayer and action are inseparable and that both have immeasurable influence in the world.

Papua New Guinea 2009

In Christ, Many Members Yet One Body

On March 6, 2009, the women of Papua New Guinea invite us to have the confidence of Ruth, who left what was familiar to her and went with Naomi to another land. They call us to ponder the mystery of our oneness in Christ in their context and our own. Papua New Guinea has one of the most heterogeneous indigenous populations in the world. More than 800 languages are spoken. Their diversity is expressed in this saying, “For each village another culture.” Yet, the bilum, a traditional string bag is found nearly everywhere. Bilums come in many colors, sizes, shapes, and styles and often the creative designs identify where the bilums were made. Men usually prefer a long handle style that is worn over the shoulder. Women carry their babies and their market produce. Bilums are also used as a hanging cradle for a sleeping baby. We are also invited to reflect on the collaborative networks among women. In Exodus, the story of deliverance from bondage begins with women’s non-violent intervention. Their actions ignore the social forces that are rooted in the fallacy that one group is superior to the other and is entitled to exploit them. Together, the women overcome evil with good. So, too, in the context of Papua New Guinea, we are given examples of women’s intervention in Bougainville and in the Highlands. And we are called to identify women’s intervention in our own context. We thank you, God, for directing our lives. As women united as one in your body, with your love and your power in us, we pray that we would be your instruments for peace and reconciliation.

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Dietrich Bonhoeffer

We must act and dare the appropiateness and not whatever comes to our mind not floating in the likelihood but grasp the reality as brave as we can be freedom lies in action not in the absence of mind obedience knows the essence of good and satisfies it, freedom dares to act and returns God the ultimate judgment of what is right and what is wrong, Obedience performs blindly but Freedom is wide awake Freedom wants to know why, Obedience has its hands tied, Freedom is inventive obedient man respects God’s commands and by virtu of his Freedom, he creats new commands. Both Obedience and Freedom come true in responsability (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)

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