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Christians who care about climate change can bear witness by ensuring they tread lightly on the earth through reducing their consumption and adopting a sustainable lifestyle. But acting on climate change goes beyond what we can do as individuals or as a church to reduce our carbon footprints. It goes right to the heart of our faith and spiritual calling and challenges us to be a prophetic voice for climate justice.
Here are some of the ways in which you can get involved to make a difference.
We have compiled a comprehensive list of possible actions that may help to encourage your church community to become more engaged with environmental issues, including climate change. Church engagement on green issues is a journey that needs to unfold gradually. These ideas recognise the different starting points of a ‘beginner’, ‘intermediate’ and ‘advanced’ church. It covers worship, education and raising awareness, church mission, campaigns and lobbying, church building and grounds, church resources, church community and wider links.
This is an initiative for Christians to pray and fast on the first of every month for a meaningful and just global climate agreement at the UN talks. The vision is for Christians to join together each month in whatever way or situation works best for them – during a lunch break, or in a church or community hall, or within a church home-group. Alternatively, a vigil or public event can be held in a prominent place for greater visibility and access by a range of groups. Are you able to talk with like-minded people in your area to organise a time and venue to meet each month? Further information about events and resources, including prayer points and a worship sheet, are available on the Pray and Fast for the Climate website.
Our current campaign is Bright Now: towards fossil free Churches. We believe that Churches need to disinvest from fossil fuel companies if they are to retain their integrity in the face of climate change. There are many ways to get involved: signing a petition; writing to investment decision-makers; organising an event to raise awareness; or putting forward a motion through regional and national Church governing structures. Please visit the Bright Now website to find out more.
Together with other environment and faith organisations we lobby for energy and climate policy reform in the UK. You can encourage your church congregation or group to take part in specific campaigns. For example, you could engage in letter-writing or hosting an event prior to the next general election to lobby political candidates to make strong commitments to tackle climate change. Further guidance is available at Hope for the Future.
We are part of the Climate Coalition, a large coalition of over 300 grassroots and national organisations who are active on climate change. We support the Climate Coalition campaign For the Love of… which provides an interactive platform for a wide range of people to engage with the climate change agenda. There are various actions at strategic political moments over the next couple of years. For further ideas see our For the Love of God’s Planet, God’s People campaign page.
There are many ways to inspire others and to help them better understand the issues around Christianity and climate change. You could give a talk at your church, organise an event with a film or guest speaker, organise a climate service or hold a study group on creation care and climate change. We have several resources and briefings to support you in this work.
It is useful to set up a local action group with other like-minded people and to talk with senior church leaders to build support for this work locally. Local networks can help to sustain and nourish our activism and keep our spiritual inspiration alive.
You can write an article for your church news, website or blog; put up an attractive display board about climate change and the work of Operation Noah; help to promote climate change related events; post information on social media; or write a press release about what your church group is doing.
Help us to ‘keep the Ark afloat’. As a small, grassroots organisation we rely on donations from supporters, particularly if you are able to make a regular commitment. Please donate now. You can also help with raising funds by asking your church committee to make a donation or organising a service collection.
To keep up to date with our work and the latest issues, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Share our posts to help spread the word about climate change and what Christians are doing to make a difference.