We believe that God made this world and that he loves it. We also believe that God created mankind and that he gave us the task of looking after this precious planet – which sadly we are failing to do.
We believe that Jesus died to redeem this world – the whole of creation – and that God has a future for it. As Christians we work to spread the good news of salvation for all who accept Jesus. In a similar way we need to work to help mitigate the damage to God’s creation.
Climate change and biodiversity loss with the accompanying droughts, floods and extreme weather is causing acute suffering to people in developing countries as they find it harder and harder to make a living from the land. So creation care is also an issue of justice for our brothers and sisters in other countries.
A Rocha, a Christian Environmental Charity have produced a scheme, Eco Church which helps churches care for God’s wonderful creation. There are five areas which we are encouraged to engage with to gain bronze, silver or gold awards. St John’s Church has reached silver and are now ‘going for gold’.
These are some of the actions we have taken, amongst many others:
Worship and Teaching – we regularly use hymns, songs and liturgies enabling us to celebrate creation; and have a creation themed service at least annually. We also include caring for God’s earth in our children and young peoples’ groups and home groups.
Buildings – We have installed cycle racks and water butts in the churchyard and our toilets are dual flush. We use mugs rather than disposable cups for our coffee in church. We offset our gas use via Climate Stewards.
Land – We manage the churchyard to encourage wildlife, have installed bird boxes and a bug hotel. We also have an allotment and what we grow is given to the local food bank. Some young people have been involved in helping to maintain it.
Community and Global Engagement – We organise a monthly litter pick – we have found many interesting items as well as the usual rubbish! Some of us have met with our MP to discuss environmental matters. The young people organised a sale of recycled toilet rolls. The money raised was used to twin our toilets which paid for a toilet in a developing country.
Lifestyle – we use the church magazine and newssheet to encourage members to consider creation care in their individual households. Most recently we are encouraging households to engage with the ‘creationcare.org.uk’ website. We’d be delighted if you’d look it up too!