“You should be able to write your own destiny.” – Anna Piper Scott
On Sunday 6 March 2022, Coburg Uniting Church held the inaugural Heather Pover Oration. This annual lunch and speech is dedicated to the memory of Heather Pover, a recently departed member of Coburg Uniting Church, a lifelong feminist.
The address was delivered by stand-up comedian and writer, Anna Piper Scott. Anna explored the dangers of transphobia and biological essentialism, and how these ideas can limit all of us (not just trans people), by forcing fixed notions of gender upon each of us. From the pressures of not conforming to traditional masculinity and femininity to the limits we place on empathy and human connection, the false and constricting notions of biological essentialism hinder us from living freely and caring for each other.
Anna’s speech sparked tears, laughter, and conversations around liberation at the hearty lunch that followed. She noted, “This is the best experience I have ever had in a church.”
We thank her for her powerful speech, and we thank the volunteers who worked to create the lunch and the whole event. We look forward to many more years of honouring the memory of Heather Pover.