Congratulations St Barnabas! Through our hard work engaging in how we can be an environmentally sustainable church we have achieved the Bronze Eco Church Award. This award reflects our commitment to being good stewards of our amazing planet in our Worship and Teaching, Management of Church Buildings and Land, Community and Global Engagement and Lifestyle. We have been engaging in this in various ways such as establishing our wildflower garden, telling others about why we want to look after the environment, praying for our planet and looking out how we as a church can sustainably use our resources. A big thank you to everyone who has been involved and especially Dr Ian Todd, who is working so hard to ensure that we can be a sustainable church which loves and cares for this wonderful world which God has given us. It's great to have this award to recognise our hard work but we aren't finished! We are excited to continue to think about how we can be an Eco church and to go for the Silver and then Gold awards!
If you would like to find out more about how we as a church can look after the environment do talk to Ian. You can also look at the Eco Church website (https://ecochurch.arocha.org.uk/) and the Church of England's website (https://www.churchofengland.org/about/policy-and-thinking/our-views/environment-and-climate-change). If you have any thoughts about how we as a Church can continue to look after the environment please share them or if you would like to be involved please do. We believe that as the beloved children of God we all have been given this planet by God and that we should look after this gift.
As we think about how we as a church can love and care for our environment why not think about how you as an individual can do this. At the moment we are looking at Resolutions at our Sunday morning Together at Home services, why not have a New Year's Resolution to make one change to your lifestyle to look after our planet?
Here is some thoughts from Pippa Daniels, our intern - 'Lockdown has really helped me to appreciate nature and the environment. On my daily walks I enjoy looking at the different plants, feeling the wind in the face and the sun in my eyes. I've realised how important nature is and how our actions affect the environment. There has been various stories in the news about how nature has changed this past year, like how the lack of water traffic have meant that fishes are back in Venice's canals. I've been challenged by this to think about how I can live a more sustainable life and make some small changes that have a big difference. For example, to decrease the amount of plastic I use, I have stopped using liquid soap in plastic bottles and now I use soap bars instead. It's been a great change, not only have I cut down on the amount of plastic I use but soap bars are a lot cheaper and there are lots of Fairtrade options so that I can make sure that the people who make the soap are paid fairly.' What small changes could you make to love and care for the environment?
Thank you again to all those who have been involved in helping to make our church more environmentally sustainable, we look forward to continuing to care for our planet both as a community and as individuals.
To close, here is a prayer that has been shared by the Church of England,
May God who established the dance of creation,
Who marvelled at the lilies of the field,
Who transforms chaos to order,
Lead us to transform our lives and the Church
To reflect God's glory in creation.