Greta Thunberg was in Bristol yesterday, joining a youth movement, Bristol Youth Strike 4 Climate, in a climate march. All seemed to go well and safely, even though concerns about numbers were what brought it to national attention beforehand! What a phenomenal difference this teenager has made in global terms in just the past 18 months. What started out as just her striking from school on Fridays has helped raise the issue of the environmental crisis to the absolute forefront, with everyone, at all levels of society.
How we in the CCN respond to our climate emergency today and going forward is vital – indeed the CCN has taken strong stands on the environment before. Humanity’s reconciliation with, and ongoing treatment of, God’s creation is fundamental; it underlines everything else. It’s something we’ll be talking about and making decisions on this coming week with the lead CCN partners from the various regions of the globe (our ‘international reps’), as we meet together, in Coventry, as we do every couple of years. How do we as a Christian community respond to the welcome – but definitely challenging – commitment from the Church of England, among others, to become carbon net zero within the next decade? What does this actually mean for how we live our lives? How do we support and encourage our 240+ partners in doing this? Undoubtedly there are others – organisations and individuals – out there who are way ahead of us in this; how do we make best use of their knowledge, expertise and resources to play our part in helping everyone take better care of our planet? How, indeed, do we continue to hold such senior level discussions within the CCN, scattered across the globe as we are? (yes, most will have travelled to this meeting by aeroplane).
A further key issue is in our increasing the CCN’s profile with, and interest to, younger audiences over the coming decades. In many ways the two are very connected. As with the environment, much relies on our partnering with those already well ahead in doing this, and listening, and responding to, where we can, what captures young Christians’ interest and enthusiasm.
Please pray for wisdom and guidance as we discuss these issues – and if in direct practical terms you have suggestions as to those with resources and advice that we might consider adding to our list to share and speak to, I’d love to hear from you!
With our blessings,
Alice Farnhill, CCN Project Officer
Image by Bessi from Pixabay