'Hope for the Fatherless,' Rev Craig Sweeney-Essex, 16-9-19

In the USA it is believed that around 20 million children come from fatherless families.[1] A headline in a South African newspaper read, ‘consumed by fatherlessness.’[2] It is believed that over 60% of South African children are fatherless![3] A UK newspaper reported that, ‘Britain is facing a “crisis of fatherlessness” in which almost half of all children born today will not be living with both parents by the time they are 15.’[4] Christian adoption charity, Home for Good, state that ‘every year 40,000 children and young people come into care in the UK’.[5]


As a result of this fatherlessness several negative consequences have been highlighted through several different studies:[6] Poverty, substance abuse, decreased educational achievement, increased involvement in crime, sexual activity and teen pregnancy, decreased physical and emotional health, low self-esteem, a lack of ability to form happy long lasting relationships as adults, increased aggression, and more!


So, it is important for us to think about two questions:


As the Church, what do we have to say into this situation of fatherlessness?

What hope do we have to offer our society, this world, as the people of God concerning fatherlessness?

[1] http://fathers.com/wp39/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/fatherlessInfographic.pdf

[2] https://www.thetrumpet.com/16988-south-africa-consumed-by-fatherlessness

[3] https://www.thetrumpet.com/16988-south-africa-consumed-by-fatherlessness

[4] https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/feb/12/fatherless-society-children-in-poverty-iain-duncan-smith--social-justice-thinktank

[5] https://www.homeforgood.org.uk/

[6] These consequences are taken from the previously referenced sources and http://fathers.com/statistics-and-research/the-consequences-of-fatherlessness/


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