Opinion

Wanted: Christians in parliament

Lucy Gichuhi on leadership

Senator Lucy Gichuhi addressed the staff of Alphacrucis College, saying Christians have a “mandate” to be involved in this nation’s leadership. The Pentecostal college plans to lodge its application for “university college” status this year – the first stage in becoming a full university.

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Gichuhi told the story of what happened when she received the news that Senator Bob Day would have to stand down. Gichuhi was second on his  ticket, but it was far from clear what would happen next.

Since the election I had begun to read the Bible – you know how you go to church and the pastor says ‘we are in Isaiah 22’, but I would have trouble finding it – so I had decided I would no longer be a Christian who had no idea what is in the Bible.

So I was reading the Bible systematically when I got this call. I called Bob’s office and there was a lot of confusion.

I remember Mark [Mark Mudri, a lawyer who was Gichuhi’s mentor] telling me ‘go read Nehemiah.’

I said, “What, Jeremiah?” He said “No, Nehemiah.”

I read it. It did not make sense. “It does not apply,” I said. I did not understand.

I did not know the law that if a senator resigns he could pick who replaced them. We found out that Bob had already picked his chief of staff to be his successor. I understood that and thought ‘that’s gone.’

I would wake up at 3am and just read the Bible with an eye to all the possibilities.

But within two days news started to come that Bob may not have been eligible to stand at the election in the first place. That meant he was not in a position to pick his successor. There would have to be a recount.

I was watching this, and now I got really scared at the prospect [of replacing Senator Day.] I dug into the Bible. I would wake up at 3am and just read the Bible with an eye to all the possibilities.

I was catapulted into the Senate … knowing for sure that I was there to advance the kingdom of God.

So I was reading my Bible. I continued reading my Bible until on the day the High Court decided there would be a recount and I would become the next senator, was the day I read the last chapter of the Bible.

This is how I was catapulted into the Senate without fear, and knowing for sure that I was there to advance the kingdom of God in any manner I could.

And for that I have applied to every policy and I have fearlessly advanced whatever needs to be done.

We cannot separate our law from our Christian basis

This is a message I would like to give to all Christians in Australia: this country’s Constitution and law are based on Judeo-Christian values. In short, the principle of love of your neighbour. It doesn’t come from anywhere else. It comes from the Bible.

But our Christian past has been caught up with a secular separation of church and state. My own opinion is that this is not right. We cannot separate our law from our Christian basis or separate the leadership of our nation [from Christianity].

I believe we have a God-given mandate. My message to the college today as we advance to become a university – this is not a luxury, that is not something to take lightly – this is something to fight for. It is a mandate we should grab and not give up. We should not give up the leadership of our country.

“Whether you call it politics or leadership, there is a mission we must accomplish. And with a Christian college, with top talent poured into it for years and years, it is time to advance, it is time to inject new energy.”

Lucy Gichuhi is a Liberal Party senator for South Australia.

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