PRESS RELEASE: Indigenous Leader Advocates for Unity on Australia Day

Indigenous Leader Advocates for Unity on Australia Day

My children say to me, “Happy Invasion Day, Dad.” But I say to them, “Happy Unity Day.” These powerful words come from Pastor James Dargin, a recognised Indigenous leader and elder in Wollongong, who has a deep love for people and for Australia.

James has seen much pain and suffering in his life and his message is simple: we need to forgive so we can build a united future for our children.

According to James, there is no better opportunity to practice this than on Australia’s national holiday. “Let’s not change the date of the 26th of January,” he says. “But let’s change our heart on the 26th of January.”

James continued, “I grew up with mental abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse. I was tied to a bed; my brother was tied under our house. My brother was put on a hot stove. I grew up with racism. I grew up with a lot of abuse. And it got to a point for me to hide that abuse is that I was on alcohol and drugs for 40 years straight.”

As a result, James is convinced that division over issues like Australia Day is unproductive and ultimately destructive. He has a better vision for how we can celebrate:

“Let’s come together and call it Unity Day, Forgiveness Day — to forgive each other, to love one another. It should be a day of celebration, of love. Hug someone. Forgive somebody. Love somebody. That’s what we should be celebrating. What happened in the past was horrific. Let’s come together, let’s build a future for the next generation. One I forgive you is worth a thousand sorrys.”

James has not always thought this way about Australia Day. He grew up thinking about it as ‘Invasion Day’. He said that perspective often stirred up anger in his heart. But no longer: “Now that I forgive, that pain, that anger, has been removed and replaced with love and joy and unity.”

Now he wants everyone to know the freedom that forgiveness brings. “Let’s share Unity Day with the whole nation. Draw it anywhere, put it on your t-shirt, share it on social media.” James concludes his reflections saying, “So on the 26th of January, Unity Day, love somebody, hug somebody, forgive somebody, because we are one.”

In Peace, Joy. Love and Forgiveness,

By Ps James Dargin
Wollongong, NSW

Media Contact:
James Dargin
M: 0475 383 119

Indigenous Leader Advocates for Unity on Australia Day by Indigenous:
Ps James Dargin. VIDEO Duration: 1:17 Seconds

WISH SOMEONE HAPPY UNITY DAY: Indigenous Leader Advocates for Unity on Australia Day:
Ps James Dargin. VIDEO Duration: 4:58 Seconds

Media Contacts:

Name: James DarginCompany: Warwick MarshEmail: Phone: 0475383119

About Warwick Marsh

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The Canberra Declaration is an active, caring, growing community of people who have a vision for an Australia where children are safe, women are secure, families are happy, everyone receives a fair go, incentive is rewarded, integrity is paramount, life is precious, freedom is for all, including those of faith. Where everyone is able to enjoy the prosperity that comes from the revitalisation of the Judeo-Christian Values that form the foundation of our nation. The Canberra Declaration is also a call to our national leaders to protect life, defend marriage, support family, rebuild our Judeo-Christian foundations, secure our religious freedom and safe guard our children. The values listed in the Canberra Declaration are under threat! They are being attacked and undermined on many fronts, by dedicated and articulate proponents of different views. The Canberra Declaration was drafted by a collective of community and Christian leaders from many denominations with a heart for the nation and was released on 23 July 2010. While these values are under threat in Australia and throughout the world, we fight to defend these values for Australia and for Australia’s children. We invite you to join us in our stand for a better Australia for the benefit of everyone.