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Widows of the world

"... plead the case of the widow." Isaiah 1.17

Throughout Scripture God asserts his concern for widows - usually in conjunction with orphans and those who are poor. In the ancient world, women lacked equal rights and therefore became dependent upon the men in their lives. If they were married that meant their husband. But when a man died that often left his widow destitute because there was no social security. So widows were counted in the same ranks as orphans and poor people generally.

They say that the mark of a civilised society is the quality with which it cares for its most vulnerable members. The picture around the world is mixed - which is why we need such an occasion as today's International Widows' Day. Those who belong to the Judaeo-Christian tradition can affirm that this is both a necessary gesture of compassion and an expression of the particular concern of Almighty God!



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