Hilary Dring, Diocesan President of the Mothers’ Union, writes:
A provocative exhibition which is touring Ireland is coming to St. Mary’s Church, Carrigaline, Co. Cork. It will take place during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence which takes place each year from 25th November to 10th December.
Initially shown in Edinburgh in 2017, ‘Souls of our Shoes – A Journey into and out of Domestic Abuse’ is an exhibition which walks viewers through the reality of domestic abuse. This incredibly powerful and compelling exhibition is an initiative of Mothers’ Union Ireland; its main purpose is to raise awareness of domestic violence.
The first All-Ireland Souls of Our Shoes Exhibition was mounted in Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin for the duration of the World Meeting of Families in 2018. It was a moving and meaningful experience, visited by thousands of visitors and pilgrims, many of whom echoed that domestic abuse was endemic in their own country. Some took photos, asked questions, and were excited to be taking this idea back to their own country.
Souls of Our Shoes is an exhibition of physical shoes accompanied by comments from those who have walked away from abuse, and from those who journey with them. Individuals and groups are welcome to drop in during this time to view the exhibition and stand in solidarity with all who experience domestic abuse.
The Rector of Carrigaline Union of Parishes, Revd Canon Elaine Murray commented:
As the Rector of Carrigaline Union, I am delighted to welcome this exhibition to St Mary’s Church. As Christian Communities, we are called to provide assistance to, seek safety and health for, and serve as an advocate for the victims of domestic abuse. If we ignore such abuse and politely act as if it does not exist, we perpetuate violence and leave the “least of these” as vulnerable victims of violence and abuse. Thank you to the Mothers’ Union for organising such a powerful witness.’