Making faith connections at the United Nations

By Candice Johnson

Lynnaia Main, Ryan Koch, Chrysula Winegar

On Tuesday, October 17, 2017 the New York Chapter of the Religion Communicators Council gathered at the Episcopal Church Center for its monthly lunch meeting. This month’s speakers were Lynnaia Main who is the Episcopal Church’s Representative to the United Nations and Chrysula Winegar of the United Nations Foundation. They spoke about making faith connections at the United Nations.

Chrysula Winegar

After a brief introduction from chapter president Ryan Koch, Chrysula spoke first. She described her work at the United Nations Foundation and her role with the Global Mom’s Challenge. At the Global Mom’s Challenge she works to encourage mothers around the world to get involved in grassroots activism and then eventually connects them to non-governmental organizations. She also took time to speak about the Sustainable Development Goals. These are 17 goals to end extreme poverty and are a continuation of the Millennium Development Goals. She ended by encouraging faith communities to be involved in the conversation at the United Nations even if it’s uncomfortable.

Lynnaia Main

Lynnaia then spoke about her experience being a representative of the Episcopal Church at the United Nations. She explained how to be an advocate for your faith at the United Nations. This included the importance of being careful how you discuss faith and to not come across too strong. It’s important to learn the UN language and carry yourself like a diplomat would in order to be treated like an insider. Similarly to Chrysula, she discussed the importance of faith communities showing-up and being part of the conversation at the UN. Lynnaia explained that one way she helps the Episcopal church get involved in the UN is they follow and promote UN social media campaigns. There is a connection between the work the United Nations is doing and the work the churches are already doing so it easy to incorporate these campaigns.

The next New York RCC meeting will be on November 21, 2017 and will feature David Gibson of Fordham's Center on Religion and Culture.

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