God created humans in His image, and gave us the responsibility to care for creation as He would. What an overwhelming task! The Truth is that changing light bulbs, while a good start, simply is not enough to restore balance to the creation. We must work in concert – group by group, congregation by congregation, community by community, and nation by nation to restore the creation. After all, the Bible calls us to communal action in the matter of stewardship. We must work together on a large scale. (Rebekah Simon-Peter, Green Church, 2010).
Diocesan Chaplain for the Environment, Sarah Ficko, encourages individuals and parishes to reflect on the various ways we, as Christians, can develop a better care for the environment:
“Most people realize that our daily actions are impacting our environment, but it's overwhelming to think about changing our lifestyle. Seemingly simple actions go a long way."
Sarah is a PhD candidate at the University of Alberta, specializing in Land Reclamation and Revegetation, and is a member of the St. Aidan’s community at St. George’s, Edmonton. She prays that action to reduce our environmental impact through change, whether small or big, will serve to model how we all play an important role in the stewardship of creation.
Environmental sustainability is strongly linked with social justice and equity, says Sarah. For example, church land and roof space can and should be used to generate energy, food, and other resources to support local communities and people living in poverty. A great example is a parish community garden in which fresh produce is grown for a local food bank.
Through a new diocesan grant program, parishes may soon be able to apply for small grants after they have completed an energy audit of their church buildings. The types of improvements the grants would help fund include the installation of LED lightbulbs and low flush toilets and/or solar panels to minimize energy consumption from non-renewable sources.
Sarah is eager to hear about parish projects in support of environmental sustainability. To share an idea or invite her to speak at your parish, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2017, all churches are invited to celebrate the "Season of Creation," September 1st to October 4th, in their faith community. Possible parish activities include: prayer services (see below), intergenerational... Read More