Could your church hold a Climate Sunday Service in early 2022?
Judith Allinson writes:-
As the weather gets more erratic worldwide with increasing storms, floods and droughts it becomes obvious to the average congregation member that Climate Change is taking place and that what the scientists have been predicting for many years is actually happening. Below I give an account of what we did at my church in Settle, North Yorkshire for Climate Sunday which we held on 5 Sept 2021 (by chance the same day as the national service)
Although the funding for the Climate Sunday Project is coming to an end (I think), as the project was designed to lead up to COP26 at Glasgow in November 2021, the material that they have produced is available on their website for others to use. I do hope there will still be some method of recording which churches hold a Climate Sunday, and to publicise that they have done so.
There is a Zoom Meeting organised by Climate Sunday (of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland) on Thursday 20 January 2022 at 7pm to discuss this – find out more and
Book that date!
The three key points to include in a Climate Sunday Service are:-
2. Commit: Make a commitment as a local church community to taking long term action to reduce your own greenhouse gas emissions.
3. Speak Up: Use your voice to tell politicians that you want a cleaner, greener, fairer future at the heart of plans to rebuild a strong economy.
Here’s what Settle Methodist Church did for our Climate Sunday service in September 2021. I note that
- We are lucky in having the Church Minister understanding the ecological situation and in having one of our eco-group as Lead Church Steward.
- We followed the instructions on the Climate Sunday Website, with modifications to suit our situation.
Philip introduced the four of us in our green group who are leading the service:
Judith – “the scientist”- who explained about green house gases – with the visual aid of soft toys that got too hot/suffocated- with the extra layers of green house gases on our world – as represented by blankets.
Kath – “the farmer” who included prayers for the farming community. She also referred to carbon storage in soils.
Robin – “the mathematician (and church treasurer)” – who was able to show how our heating bills had come down when we left our old church building 5 years ago and moved into our new worship room.
Philip – didn’t claim any title – but he was the MC – and introduced the important bit at the end: Explaining to the congregation about two things
1. That from now on we are going to have an “ECOmmit bottle”. Every Sunday throughout the year each member of the congregation is invited to fill in an ECOmmit slip – with something they have done this week, or something they promise to do in the coming week.
Nobody will read the slips – they are private – between us and God. At the end of the year – next September we hope we will have filled the bottle.
There is also space on an adjacent notice board for people to write suggestions they would like others to know about.
2. Philip invited the congregation to sign a pledge – which most did. This has now been framed and hangs in the church hall.
The group ran the same service (But without the pledge) at two others of the seven churches in the circuit – Ingleton and Hellifeld – the following week.
One spin off of this is that we discovered a member of Ingleton Congregation would be going to COP26 in Glasgow in November as part of his work at Leeds University doing work on Farming in East Africa, and we hope to hear more from him later.
Settle Methodist Church gained its Bronze Eco Church Award two years ago and is working towards its Silver Award.
Do let us know what you did for your Climate Sunday.