What is Eco Church?
Back in 2019 when we joined the Eco Church scheme it was all about the Parish of the Resurrection making a commitment to caring for God’s Earth in five key areas of our church life: worship and teaching, management of church buildings, management of church land, community/global engagement and lifestyle. The ideals were written out below but obviously with the current restrictions in place whilst the COVID 19 Pandemic is on, we have had to do things differently but they still remain our aim
Worship and teaching – the Eco Church team will work with the Ministry Team to ensure our services and other acts celebrate creation throughout the year, and to include it in our prayers and the teaching we receive. There will be display boards in each church, on social media and in Parish Matters; we will sign post to local initiatives, such as Energy Alton, ACAN, ALFI, Alton society’s litter pick etc. as well as joining relevant global initiatives – POTR is already part of toilet twinning.
Buildings – specifically surveys of all church buildings will be undertaken in the next six weeks to see where we can reduce our carbon footprint. Then plans will be drawn up of what could be done and the related costs – priorities will then be set. Steps have been taken already – heating in the Parish Centre and Holy Rood has switched to more energy efficient gas fired radiators. All the energy for the parish is purchased using the Parish Buying Scheme and is from 100% renewable energy sources.
Land – is concerned with how we can look after the church land in a wildlife friendly way. Our wildlife is in serious decline and we need to do something about it, now. We plan to look at how all our churchyards are managed so that wildlife is encouraged – we can journey from green desert to land teeming with life by, for example, easing up on mowing everywhere and allowing shrubby scrub along site margins, possibly creating small ponds and wetland areas.
Lifestyle – our individual and corporate impact on the environment. Everyone, we are sure, is aware of the mantra Reduce, Reuse and Recycle and the parish is committed to be part of this and to encourage all members to join in.
The Parish as a whole has already committed to using only Fairtrade products when refreshments are served after services. Also, the amount of paper and printing used to produce Parish Matters has been reduced by having one sheet rather than two. Two small steps to start with, but that is how big things happen.
Please pray for Eco Church, for the environment and for everyone committed to help deal with the climate emergency.
We would encourage people to join in on any of the initiatives and to contact us with ideas of their own. The Eco Church team & and their contact details are:
Elspeth Mackeggie Gurney firstname.lastname@example.org
John Hubbard email@example.com
Julie Howe firstname.lastname@example.org
Rob Simpson email@example.com
Ruth Randall firstname.lastname@example.org
Martyn & Sue Dell email@example.com
Jenny Thompson firstname.lastname@example.org
See the links below for a few ways in which we are making changes across our parish.