As the season of Lent draws near, the Ecumenical Water Network (EWN) is inviting Christians to mark the occasion with reflection and action on some urgent water justice concerns.
During the Seven Weeks for Water initiative, theologians and church activists from Africa, Europe, North and South America will share short biblical meditations for each week along with some campaigning ideas and resources.
The first set of materials will be available on the EWN website water.oikoumene.org from 25 February - Ash Wednesday according to Western Christian tradition. EWN also provides an RSS stream for the seven weeks, which allows groups and congregations to give visibility to their participation on their own websites.
"Traditionally Lent is a time for concentrating on what is essential in life and opening our hearts to our neighbours, for example by fasting and giving to the needy," says Maike Gorsboth, the EWN coordinator. "The Seven Weeks for Water initiative encourages Christian groups and individuals to deepen this experience, reflecting on the concrete issue of water justice."
Another opportunity to highlight the importance of water comes on World Water Day, on 22 March 2009.
EWN has already put together a collection of resources and links that can help congregations address the issue, inspired by prayer, biblical texts on justice and on water, and the experiences of church agencies with the challenges posed by unequal access to freshwater and sanitation.
The Seven Weeks for Water initiative was first celebrated during Lent 2008. This year, the resources will for the first time be available in four languages - English, Spanish, German and French.
More information on the Seven Weeks for Water: http://www.oikoumene.org/7-weeks-for-water
Ideas for World Water Day 2009: http://www.oikoumene.org/en/activities/ewn-home/resources-and-links/ewn-...
UN website for World Water Day: http://www.unwater.org/worldwaterday/flashindex.html