Are you interested in how your parish can help the environment? The Church of Ireland’s Church and Society Commission is holding a climate change and environment seminar at Church of Ireland House, Donegall Street, Belfast.
Stephen Trew, one of the speakers at the event said: “The Church has a key role in tackling climate change. We can speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves and develop sustainable lifestyles and mission. This seminar will explain how your church can do more.”
When: Wednesday 14 November at 10.00 am, concluding with a light lunch at 1.00 pm
Stephen Trew (environmental campaigner) – A Biblical Perspective on the Environment
David Thomas (Christian Aid Belfast) – Impact of Climate Change on the Developing World
David Ritchie (Chief Officer, Representative Church Body) – Practical Action in Parish Life
This year, the Church of Ireland passed a motion at General Synod the effects of which have rippled across Ireland and beyond. It was a motion to divest from all fossil fuels. Synod decided overwhelmingly that ending investments in fossil fuel extraction companies by 2022 was necessary because climate change is leading to disaster both for people and for investments. It is a significant change that affects €16m of funds. Climate change, caused largely by pollution from burning fossil fuels, is beginning to impact at home. We had a very wet winter last year followed by a record-breaking summer heatwave. Furthermore, around the world, the poorest are suffering from storms, heat, drought, and floods that in some countries fuel conflict and refugee crises. Air pollution from burning fossil fuels is also a serious problem. Thousands of people in the British Isles suffer from health issues and even early death from dirty air. The RCB had already, wisely, excluded investments in coal and tar san…
The editor of the Church of Ireland Gazette (paywall) asked me to write an article for the June edition on Care for Creation. I started an introductory article but I woke early one morning thinking it was just too bland. The Gazette needs to be a magazine of stimulating debate. So I started again. Here is the final version. If you'd like to read the first draft it's on the blog too it is Care for Creation draft 1,
I’m sitting at my computer at 4 am. I had already drafted the article the Editor of the Gazette asked me to write to introduce Care for Creation. But I’ve just woken up in the middle of the night thinking ‘this has to change’, the Gazette needs to be a place of provocative debate and opinion.
Here is the one part of the original article I’m keeping:
Care for creation
Why should we care for creation? As the Rev Dr Chris Wright puts it in his book, The Mission of God’s People,
"The Bible does not begin at Genesis 3 (or end at Revelation 20). You might thin…
Yesterday was the seminar on 'Helping parishes respond to climate change' organised by the Church of Ireland. It was very good to see this happen in Belfast and the was a lot of interest from attendees on how churches can do more on climate.
I was one of the speakers and it was great to have a full room in the Council Chamber in Church House in Belfast, beside the beautiful cathedral.
I have reproduced the slides and the text of the talk below.
A Biblical Perspective on the Environment
[Slide 1] I have been asked to set the scene and provide a Biblical Perspective on the environment. But to be honest, I do not know why I was asked, for I am not a theologian nor I am not a clergy person.
But I think the reason might be this - several years I was impacted by what the Bible has to say on about creation, how we treat it, and how the church has responded to the crisis unfolding before us.
And we are facing a crisis. Be it climate change, pollution, or loss of biodiversity. As the …