Giving honour where honour is due!
By Rev Cham Kaur-Mann

Join me in honouring and celebrating the gift of women and girls the world over this month!  Friday 6 March is Women’s World Day of Prayer, Sunday 8 March is International Women’s Day and incidentally, Sunday 22 March is Mother’s Day.  Take a moment to give thanks; rejoice; remember; stand together with, shoulder to shoulder, holding hands; make some noise, raise a glass (if that’s your thing), do a Bhangra move (now that’s my thing!) as we celebrate and honour women and girls!

Thanks for the trail blazers, the pioneers, the visionaries, the emancipators, the bus boycotters, the resistance leaders, the mathematicians/computers (who helped to put a man on the moon!).  To the inventors, the poets – who call us to rise, the mystics – especially those who call us to speak out, the edgewalkers, the (stained) glass ceiling breakers, the directors, the footballers, the song makers, the academics, the advocates, the legacy creators, the record breakers, the record makers, the medics, the writers.  And SO many more who made a difference by stepping forward, speaking up and taking a stand in the face of inequality, injustice, discrimination, prejudice. Their brave actions and legacy have impacted and improved our lives today…

Here are a few who have inspired me along the way… Julian of Norwich, Harriet Tubman, Pandita Ramabhai, Michelle Obama... and my present-day role models - Malala and Greta! Yet I especially want to mention and honour, Janet up the road... who is brave and inspiring, a pioneer in her own right.  Auntiji on our street, who is generous and open hearted, feeding the neighbours with her delicious bowlfuls of wonderful biryani... she unknowingly builds bridges and counters prejudice and racism with every act of kindness.  Then there’s Vanessa, who lives a life full of integrity and is always prepared to make the difficult choices. Then there’s Louise at church, a remarkable leader who doesn’t seem to realise how remarkable she is!! 

You may also be (or know of) a woman who doesn’t realise how amazing you/they are.  So…  take a moment, pause, pat yourself (them) on the back, give God thanks for your/their gifts and unique abilities and… celebrate!

Thanks to the brothers and sisters who create spaces, platforms and opportunities for us.  Thanks to all who help us realise we are all enriched by the women in our lives. 

So, join me, in honouring and celebrating the gift of women and girls the world over, with the men and boys who celebrate them too!

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About the author

Rev Cham Kaur-Mann

Rev Cham Kaur-Mann has nearly 20 years leadership experience, in the church, charity and voluntary sectors and is a mentor and coach to leaders. She is the first (and currently only) Asian woman minister within the Baptist Union of Great Britain.

Cham is Co-Director of Next Leadership and has also worked with the Cinnamon Network as the Trainers’ Team Manager, delivering leadership training across the UK.

She is a motivational speaker with a unique and compelling ability to ‘story a story’.  Cham mentors, coaches and supports leaders from a variety of sectors.  She is author of ‘Images of Jesus’ and ‘Are there traditional “women’s ministries”?’

Cham is a Certified Stakeholder Centered Coach.