In lieu of Theology Pub, this month (we'll be back in a pub with great discussion over beverages in January!) we're attending an important event.
In recognition of World Aids Day, the Sean Humphrey House is hosting a Celebration of LIfe at Garden Street United Methodist Church (GSUMC). The gathering will be in the Upstairs Chapel, this Monday, Dec. 1st, from 7 - 8pm. GSUMC is located at 1326 N. Garden St., in downtown Bellingham (link to map).
Although HIV and AIDS diseases do not get much as much press and they used to, they are still very much affecting millions of people.
According to aids.gov, in the United States in 2012, "an estimated 47,989 people were diagnosed with HIV infection in the United States. In that same year, an estimated 27,928 people were diagnosed with AIDS. Overall, an estimated 1,170,989 people in the United States have been diagnosed with AIDS (CDC. HIV Surveillance Report, 2012; vol. 24. Published November 2014).
Globally, the disease continues to devastate individuals and families.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there were approximately 35 million people worldwide living with HIV/AIDS in 2013. Of these, 3.2 million were children (<15 years old). An estimated 2.1 million individuals worldwide became newly infected with HIV in 2013. This includes over 240,000 children (<15 years). Most of these children live in sub-Saharan Africa and were infected by their HIV-positive mothers during pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding. A UNAIDS report shows that 19 million of the 35 million people living with HIV today do not know that they have the virus.
HIV is the world’s leading infectious killer. According to WHO, an estimated 39 million people have died since the first cases were reported in 1981 and 1.5 million people died of AIDS-related causes in 2013.
From worldaidscampaign.org, "World AIDS Day is held on 1 December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day and the first one was held in 1988."