Following up from the bible study course “Hope for the Planet” held in the autumn of 2006 a group was formed with the aim of promoting ecological awareness within the congregation. We recognise that the position of the Church of England is to regard man as being responsible for the stewardship of the earth.
At the meeting of the church council on March 27th 2007 the following policy statement was adopted:
Green Awareness Policy
– a policy statement adopted by Holy Trinity Church Council
Making the Church of England’s policy on the environment its own, this church council welcomes the setting up of a permanent environmental group (Green Awareness Group) and agrees to take environmental concerns fully into consideration in its decision-making. In addition it urges all members of Holy Trinity Church to take environmental issues on board in their daily lives, ever mindful that the earth is the Lord’s and therefore demands good stewardship. The council underlines the words of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams:
“For the Church of the 21st Century, good ecology is not an optional extra but a matter of justice.
It is therefore central to what it means to be a Christian.”
Therefore, the council supports the Green Awareness group’s efforts to raise awareness and encourage implementation of environmental concerns, recognising the political and social implications of these.
Below is information that has been gathered and written since that time about environmental issues.
Websites linking christianity and green awareness
Eco-Congregation – aims to encourage churches of all denominations to consider environmental issues as a Christian and make positive changes to different areas of church life, mission and witness. Overseen by the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, it offers a free environmental toolkit with 12 modules to enable churches to appraise how green they are in their worship, theology, property, children’s work, and ideas on how these areas might be developed. These modules present a programme to change the life and witness of your church in response to the crisis of the environment. All modules can be downloaded from their website. Awards are given for churches which have undertaken projects in three areas: spiritual – linking environment issues and the Christian faith, practical such as a recycling project, energy review or church yard activity, and community focused work that has a positive impact on the local community. Those who have completed the course and achieved an Eco Congregation certificate feel rightly proud of their achievement and have much to teach others embarking on changing the environmental practice in their church. Eco- Congregation offers an email newsletter to keep abreast of news, events and much more.
Christian Ecology Link (CEL) campaigns for a greener church and a greener world. It is a multi-denominational UK organisation, to support Christians from all traditions demonstrate their care for the environment. CEL believes that we are responsible for our impact on God’s creation as a whole and helps members to understand and relate these responsibilities to their faith. It offers a range of publications, Green Christian magazine where spirituality and the environment are key topics; several topic leaflets eg ‘Climate change: What Christians can do? ‘ ‘An environmental audit for churches’; ‘Energy Use in Church Buildings’; ‘Water why water is important for Christians’; Green shopping; ‘LOAF local, organic, animal friendly, and fairly traded’ and ‘Eight Ways to live gently on the earth’. CEL has an email newsletter which is good way of keeping abreast of news, events and critical issues where your action can make a difference.
Operation Noah This ecumenical programme of Christian Ecology Link, supported by CTBI, focuses specifically on campaigning on Climate Change. Its aim is to raise awareness in the churches but also to demonstrate demand among the mainstream British public for UK leadership on climate change. Noah’s prophetic actions to protect life on earth is a guide for our times. After the flood, God signed a covenant with Noah and with all creatures. That idea forms the basis of Op Noah’s Climate Covenant which pledges action to cut our carbon emissions, switch to renewable supplies of electricity and spread the word. The website includes the ‘Ark in a Box’ – a package of resources, DVDs, resource sheets (resources which complement those of Eco-congregations) to help create the culture of justice for the poor.
A Rocha an international conservation organisation working to care for Gods world. A Rocha is now a family of projects working across the world, its work identified by five core commitments and to a practical outworking of each: Christian, Conservation, Community, Cross-cultural and Cooperation in partnership with a wide variety of organisations who share a concern for a sustainable world. A Rocha promotes Environment Day on 5th June and produces good materials for use on that day.
The John Ray Initiative (JRI) is an educational charity with a vision to bring together scientific and Christian understandings of the environment in a way that can be widely communicated and lead to effective action as responsible stewards.
Shrinking the Footprint, the Church of Englands national environment campaign, was launched in June 2006, the first of a series of strategic initiatives aimed at creating “The 40% Church”. Churches are encouraged to carry out a simple environmental audit to help plan how to reduce their emissions. Shrinking the Footprint offers information, links resources for churches, including “Sharing God’s Planet: a Christian vision for a sustainable future” a report from the Church of England.
Tearfund have focused on climate as a key priority for some years, and offers major reports, stories and other resources as the effects of climate change bite into the lives of vulnerable communities across the globe. Tearfund’s “For Tomorrow Too” is provided in the pack, along with its pledge card. In February 2007 it launched its Climate Change Challenge “Don’t be a Derek”.
Christian Aid is now making climate change a key campaign priority, its partners increasingly telling of the impact on the lives of the poor communities they serve. Following its “Climate of poverty” report 2006 came ‘It’s time to change the climate” highlighting key facts, reflections, prayers, a carbon calculator, news from their partners, and practical actions and a statement of belief. In February 2007 it launched its new campaign, backed by commercial advertising and strong political campaign on its pressureworks website.
World Development Movement , created originally by the churches, WDM has launched its °C Change Campaign to emphasise the responsibility of rich countries like the UK for climate change, while poor countries bear the brunt of the impact. WDM’s campaign is calling on the UK government to act now and transform our economy to reduce our carbon emissions..
Stop Climate Chaos is a new and growing coalition of UK environmental and international development organisations, women’s organisations, activist groups and faith-based campaigns. It aims to build irresistible popular pressure on politicians to act to halt climate change. Combining with like-minded bodies in other countries it will work to ensure that other Governments do the same.
European Christian Environmental Network has liturgical material on its website as part of its invitation to all the churches in Europe to celebrate a “Time for Creation” in the Church calendar each year, from 1 September to the second Sunday in October. In some years, prayers and liturgical material are the focus, while in other years biblical meditations accompanied by short prayers was produced. This is a valuable resource for anyone organising worship, celebration and prayer round the theme of Creation.
The Season of Creation promotes the season as an opportunity to celebrate God the Creator and provides liturgies and other resources from around the world. With growing concern amongst Christian communities about the ecological crisis and the way human beings are treating God’s Earth, the Season is an effective way to focus these concerns in worship, exploring our relationship with creation, that we might seek ways to heal rather than exploit creation.
Websites with practical tips
There is a new DIY store in Amsterdam selling only sustainable building materials
Peak Oil: Life After the Oil Crash Examines the impact of the depletion of the world’s oil reserves and its consequences for the world economy and population. Links to news items, articles, etc.
Stop Global Warming Sign up on line to join with millions of other like-minded people
OUR APOLOGIES – THESE FOLLOWING LINKS WILL BE FIXED SOON!
Tomatoes of Iceland
The Circular Economy
Working as a professional in the environmental field
Letters of protest to the Minister of Infrastructure and the Environment
Grow Your Own Medicines
Green (Awareness) Trends!
Prince Willem-Alexander breaks a taboo
Understanding global warming – a time line
Understanding our climate
Advice from Greenpeace
A New Diocesan Environment Officer
Say it with Flowers
A Warning for Gardeners
Reflecting on Copenhagen
Heating energy tips
Countdown to Copenhagen
Hints for the care of plants in winter
Outing to Marienwaerdt
Shrinking the Footprint in every Parish
Prayer for Creation Time
Buying Ecologically Sound Paper Products
Green Awareness at the Music and Flower Festival
Countdown to Copenhagen
Churches in Europe are called to respond to climate change
Go for Solar Energy
Dreaming of a Green Christmas
An Answer from the Environment Minister
Thursday Prayers in September – Time for God’s Creation
Pulp and Paper – part 1
Production of Pulp and Paper including bleaching – part 2
Using Paper and Paper Products – part 3
Waste Paper and Recycling- part 4
Al Gore’s Nobel Peace Prize
Attracting Wildlife to the Garden
Sharing God’s Planet
Shrinking the Footprint
Shrinking the Footprint Celebrates it’s First Birthday
Coal-Fired Power Stations
‘Green’ Car Information
Do You Know
Away Day – Green Concerns