Dr. Annette Mehlhorn
Pastor in the protestant church of
Hessen and Nassau
Religion – Politics – Gender
In 2001, the Circle for Gender-Studies within the Protestant Academy of Arnoldshain in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Affaires in the regional government of Hessen initiated a „working-group in questions of woman’s policy concerning Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities”. After one year of work the group named itself according to the common ancestors of their faith “Sarah and Hagar”.
It consisted in about 30 women of different cultural, national und religious background and met every 2 month in the location of one of the participating communities. Actual reports from the congregations where part of the meeting. In most cases the members of the group also talkes about a basic text of one of their traditions. Differences between the specific backgrounds and their characteristics as well as an idea of actual problems, questions and challenges within the communities where perceived in this way.
In 2009 the Project „Sarah und Hagar“ won Leonore-Siegele-Wenschkewitz-Price for special engagement in feminist theology.
More about this price: www.Verein-FEM-Theologie.de
During a five-years learning- and working process the group developed „impulses for a gender-adequate social policy“ in the subjects fields of “family”, “labour” and “education”. These impulses intend to make visible the interests and needs of women as well as their different religious and cultural backgrounds. Efforts for integration, Gender Mainstreaming and the guidelines for Non-discrimination within the Charter of fundamental Rights of the EU (Art II-81.1) build the frame for the political integration of the project. For this reason the impulses will be discussed and further developed in contact with the responsible subject sections and representatives of the local governments, the religious communities, institutions and NGOs.
The group has developed a common basis concerning the aim of Gender Mainstreaming. Its members have agreed upon addressing three main subjects: family, labour and education. These are now the topics of a paper of impulses for policy-shaping principles. They where developed in continuous exchange with and consultation by specialists from religious communities, political, economical, legal and educational institutions. This paper will now be discussed with responsible persons from politics, society and religious communities in order to transfer the impulses into actions for upcoming tasks of the future.
By the publication of the “Impulses for a gender adequate social politics, based on Jewish, Christian and Muslim traditions” documented in epd-Dokumentationen 6/2006 the group intends to initiate a supra-regional exchange and discourse about questions where religion, politics and gender intersect. A broad communication of subjects of common interests to the public by seminaries, lectures and workshops is planned. In the meantime women of the region of Hessen, Nordrhein-Westfahlen and Rheinland-Pfalz, situated around the cities of Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Köln, Düsseldorf and Mainz take part in this group. It is associated to other initiatives, which also refers to the mothers of faith, Sarah and Hagar, wives of Abraham and ancestors of Jewish Christian and Muslim belief. For 2011 a congress is aimed at, which should reflect the achieved agreements and give space for visions of new perspectives and aims.
A report on the process can be found here.
More information are available on this website via the section "scripts".
Für ökumenische Begegnung und interreligiösen Dialog e.V.
Sarah und Hagar
c/o Evangelisches Frauenbegegnungszentrum
z.Hd. Pfarrerin Eli Wolf
Tel 069-92 07 08-0
as well as:
Sarah und Hagar
c/o Dr. Annette Mehlhorn