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Christians to Take Part in Climate Crisis Protests
More than 100 Christians are expected to participate in climate crisis protests around the UK during late August and early September. Members of Christian Climate Action (CCA) will join with Extinction Rebellion and a number of other organisations as part of the September Rebellion, taking place from 28 August and themed around the slogan, ‘We Want to Live’.
Melanie Nazareth, a barrister, mother of four and a CCA member, said, ‘Prayer is the foundation of everything we do in Christian Climate Action. It unites and sustains us and gives us the strength to act with loving purpose as we seek to be good stewards of God’s creation. In this vigil our prayers will help us to draw closer to God as we bear public witness to the message that God loves the creation that we are destroying.’
Community and Ecological Emergency Bill
One of the key demands of the protests will be that the UK parliament passes a Climate and Ecological Emergency (CEE) Bill into law. This bill is calling for:
The CEE Bill has been developed with members of Extinction Rebellion, members of the successful Big Ask campaign that led to the Climate Change Act (2008) and Power for People. It has been written with contributions from prominent scientists and academics. The Bill has already received support from Kumi Naidoo, (International Executive Director of Greenpeace International (2009–2016) and Secretary General of Amnesty International (2018–2020).
Individuals can sign up to support the Bill here.
Why are Christians taking part?
Hannah Malcolm, an Anglican ordinand and member of CCA, said: ‘There is no uncritical time to face up to unfolding climate collapse, but the next six months hold a vital window for change as countries plan economic stimulus packages. If used well, these could accelerate global decarbonisation. Government responses to Coronavirus around the world have demonstrated that rapid, coordinated action is possible, and have also shown us the deadly consequences of indifference. The question is, do we have the courage to abandon the usual way of doing things in order to prevent further death and suffering, and to make way for life to flourish?’
Fr Martin Newell, a Catholic priest from Birmingham and member of CCA, explained why he is taking part: ‘We believe that being faithful means taking a stand on the biggest issue of our time. If you agree, please get involved – there’s lots of work to be done, both on the ground or from home if travelling isn’t viable. When Jesus said to James and John, “Follow me,” they stood up, dropped their fishing nets and did just that. As disciples of Christ, we are called to take action. Will you stand up and do what we are called to or will you remain in the boat?’
In 2018, Operation Noah produced a statement of our position on Extinction Rebellion. It can be read here.