Religious Education and Social Justice

National Sorry Day


Since 1998 Sorry Day has been observed on 26th May each year. The day was established one year after the Bringing Them Home report was presented in the Australian Federal Parliament. 


This report detailed the impact of the forced removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families. Sorry Day offers an opportunity to reflect on the hardship faced when children were taken into institutional and foster care by governments and church agencies and placed with non-Indigenous families. These Stolen Generations suffered greatly from being removed from their loved ones at such an early age, and for many the scars were life-long. 


However, Sorry Day is also an opportunity to “acknowledge the strength of Stolen Generations Survivors and reflect on how we can all play a part in the healing process for our people and nation.”  


Sorry Day Prayer

Almighty and loving God,  

you who created ALL people in your image. 

Lead us to seek your compassion 

as we listen to the stories of our past.  

You gave your only Son, Jesus, 

who died and rose again  

so that sins will be forgiven. 


We place before you the pain and anguish 

of dispossession  of land, language, lore, culture, and family kinship that  

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have experienced.  


We live in faith that all people will rise  

from the depths of despair and hopelessness.  Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families have endured the pain and loss of loved ones, through the separation 

of children from their families. 


We are sorry and ask God’s forgiveness. 


Touch the hearts of the broken, homeless, 

and inflicted and heal their spirits.  


In your mercy and compassion walk with us  

as we continue our journey of healing  

to create a future that is just and equitable. 


Lord, you are our hope.



Aboriginal and Islander Commission of the National Council of Churches in Australia, (NATSIEC)



Jane Wilkinson

Religious Education Leader