Esk & Tweed Network
The next meeting will be in Carlops Church on Monday 30th September at 7.30pm.
The speaker will be Dr. Bruce Ball who has written a book entitled ‘The Soil under our Feet’ and who will talk to us about ‘Soil, Soul and Sustenance’, before we have the social part of the evening.
Organ Recital by Prof. Murray Campbell at 4pm
Tea/Coffee and Chat at 5pm
Outdoor Covenanter Service at Harbour Craig – Walk starts at 5.30pm
A warm welcome will be given to everyone who would care to join in one or all events.
Carlops Church is holding a Flower Festival on the last weekend in June.
To conclude the festival there will be an organ recital by Prof. Murray Campbell, our session clerk and organist, at 4pm and this will be followed by tea/coffee at 5pm.
At 5.30pm we will start from the car park opposite the church to walk to Harbour Craig, which is a rocky outcrop about 2 miles south of the village of Carlops. At Harbour Craig there is a cave once used as a refuge for the Covenanters fleeing after the battle of Rullion Green in the Pentland Hills in 1666. At Harbour Craig a short service will be conducted.
From Carlops, thewalk consists of a mile and a half long car track followed by a half mile walk over very rough and sometimes marshy hillside. (The midges can be very bad and some sort of protection such as cream or a hat is advisable!) The walk gives a chance to chat and to enjoy the beautiful countryside. Dogs on leads are invited along with their owners!
We would be delighted to welcome visitors who wish to share one, or all, of these events with us.
The meeting was held in Penicuik North Kirk where delegates were warmly welcomed by David Tulloch (Eco Team leader) who then opened the proceedings with a prayer before introducing the guest speaker for the first half of the evening.
Evelyn Mitchell gave an overview of the work being done by the organisation ‘Changeworks’ to reduce WASTE.
In order to achieve this reduction Changeworks has become involved with schools, the community and businesses to:-
a) inspire action to reduce waste b) provide domestic advice c) provide staff training programmes d) set up community based waste reduction systems and e) provide education in schools.
One vital aim is to reduce material going to landfill sites which results in a waste of resources, a waste of energy, causes pollution, contributes to climate change and costs £72 per ton of waste deposited.
Everyone attending the meeting was aware in principle of the issues involved with waste but most were surprised by some of the facts and figures that Evelyn provided to drive home the message that urgent action needs to be taken. In the ‘fun quiz’ that she provided there was no one who gained 100% correct answers and she certainly made her point.
We were then told that in 2010 the Scottish Government had launched its ZERO WASTE plan with the aim of having, by 2025, reduced waste by 75%. The target for 2013 is for 50% of waste to be recycled or composted.
We were given some shocking facts relating to the ‘Reduce,Reuse,Recycle’ rule. Eg- In one year we throw out half a million tonnes of food and drink which is equivalent to £1 billion of wasted food while, in the world, one billion people suffer the effects of hunger and 1 in 5 people are not getting enough to eat.
So what can we do? We were given some simple suggestions such as:- a) plan well before going shopping b) store food safely c) be more aware of portioning and don’t cook more than is necessary d) and use ,or when possible freeze, leftovers instead of throwing them out.
When Evelyn completed her talk she left us with the message that we must each play our part on our own homes and, where possible, spread the information as widely as we can. It also made us realise the importance of the work of our churches in supporting causes dealing with hunger issues across the world.
Evelyn offered to organise talks or give information to any other interested groups. She can be contacted at www.changeworks.org.uk
David thanked Evelyn for her interesting and informative talk and during the break that followed we had the chance to talk together and to enjoy the excellent home baking that David’s team provided for us.
In the second half of the evening Margaret Warnock, Co-ordinator for Eco-Congregation Scotland, gave a short update on the movement.
It has been decided that there will be a Continuing Award on offer for churches which have already gained a first, second and third Award.
An Eco-Congregation Chaplain has been appointed with the funding support of the United Reform Church.
More information can be found on the website www.ecocongregationscotland .
David thanked Margaret and then gave a presentation describing the refurbishment of Penicuik North Kirk and the potential provided by this work.
This most ambitious plan, known as The Open Door Project, started in 2000 with a vision of what the Penicuik North Kirk family could do for the community. Refurbishment was necessary to allow the vision to become a reality and at a cost of £360,087 and 15p the work was completed on budget and in time . By 2008 the loan, which had been taken out, was repaid and David impressed all those present when he described how this had been achieved and the many projects that have since been undertaken.
Probably the most successful is the Open Door Café, situated just inside the front door of the church and manned by volunteers, which has become a place of fellowship for a great many people.
The most recent project has been the setting up of a food bank for needy families- Foodstore@PNK . Church members bring with them each Sunday the gift of one item and these are stored before distribution in cupboards that have been built on the church premises by a team under the leadership of Andrew Knox an Eco Team member.
David concluded his presentation by showing a 10 minute video showing church members at work and depicting the final result of the refurbishment.
We were left with the impression that the refurbishment created much hard work but also a great deal of fun and fellowship within the church family.
Nan Buchan thanked David for giving such an interesting presentation on the refurbishment and such am impressive description of the work of the church thereafter. She thanked Penicuik North for hosting this network meeting, for the warm welcome, the friendly atmosphere and home baking during the break and the inspiration of the vision of the North Kirk Family.
1. Two suggestions were put forward for consideration.
a). - to change the months for the network meetings from March and October to April and September to give more chance of .reasonable weather for travel
b). - to support a three year project, initiated by the Presbytery of Melrose and Peebles, to pay for the training, educational materials, food and clothes required by Jessie Backson who has been selected to train as a midwife in Malawi where there are a large number of deaths during child birth.
It was explained that very small donations will make a big difference to this project and so it was suggested that a donation plate be put out during the refreshment breaks at future network meetings to allow those wishing to do so to make a contribution to this cause.
2. Carlops has offered to host the meeting in September 2013.
3. Offers to host future meeting were invited and also suggestions for topics and speakers.
Rev. Ruth Halley closed the meeting with prayer.
As previously announced, Eco-Congregation Scotland is running an event on the role of faith in changing our behaviour towards the environment at the Science Festival.
An A4 PDF leaflet is now available to download and distribute or put on notice boards.
Click here to download it.
The text of the leaflet is as follows:
We cannot combat the effects of Climate Change without altering how we behave. With 2000 years experience in guiding people’s behaviour, what role can religious faith play in the future of our environment?
Journalist Lesley Riddoch chairs a fascinating panel discussion with Professor Michael Northcott from the University of Edinburgh, Professor Stephen Reicher from the University of St Andrews, Dr Rebekah Widdowfield from the Scottish Government and Morag Wilson from WWF Scotland with audience participation fuelling the debate.
The debate will take place at 6pm on Tuesday 2nd April in the Teviot Row Dining Room at the Teviot Student’s Union building, Bristo Square, Edinburgh.
Tickets are £8 (£6) and are available from www.sciencefestival.co.uk, by phoning the box office on 0844 557 2686 or from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival shop, 180 High Street, Edinburgh.
Event organised by Eco-Congregation Scotland and sponsored by Action of Churches Together in Scotland.
You are all warmly invited to Penicuik North Kirk on 11th March at 7.30pm for our network meeting.
The speaker will be a representative from Changeworks – Zero Waste – and will give an overview of aspects of Food Waste, Recycling and Composting.
Since this is our first visit to the North Kirk, the leader of the Eco Team has offered to describe the refurbishment of the Church and the opportunities that this provided. We have been delighted to accept his offer and can look forward to an interesting evening.
Please contact Nan Buchan on nanbuchanhotmailcouk (nanbuchanhotmailcouk) if you would like to come.
Penicuik North Kirk is located at 95 John Street, Penicuik, Midlothian EH26 8AG.
5th May 2013 – For Immediate Release.
FAITH COMES TO THE SCIENCE FESTIVAL
Eco-Congregation Scotland is holding an event at the Edinburgh International Science Festival on Tuesday 2nd of April.
The event entitled “Faith in the future: the church and our environment” will be chaired by journalist Lesley Riddoch and brings together psychologists, theologians and others interested in behaviour change to discuss how religious faith can be a driver for environmental sustainability. Four expert speakers will give their views followed by a round table discussion with audience participation.
The event is being sponsored by Action of Churches Together in Scotland (ACTS). Scotland’s national ecumenical body made up of nine Christian denominations.
Gordon Hudson of Eco-Congregation Scotland said:
“This event moves the debate about religion and science away from stale debates about the existence of God to the practical issue of whether religious faith can change our behaviour for the good of the environment and the future of our world.”
The event is at 6pm on Tuesday 2nd April in the Dining Room at Teviot Row Student’s Union, Bristo Square, Edinburgh. Tickets are available from the Science Festival web site, by phoning the box office on 0844 557 2686 or from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival shop, 180 High Street, Edinburgh.
– ENDS –
Gordon Hudson, 0131 240 2274, managerecocongregationscotlandorg (managerecocongregationscotlandorg)
On Thursday 17th January, Paul Wheelhouse MSP, Scottish Government Minister for Environment and Climate Change, visited Carlops church to present an Eco-Congregation Scotland award to the congregation.
After speaking with members of the award winning Carlops Church plus representatives from other inspiring local Eco-Congregations Mr Wheelhouse, said, “As recent weather events have shown, climate change is becoming an ever more urgent issue. We all need to take action if we are to tackle climate change and move to a low carbon, more sustainable Scotland. And that’s exactly what our Eco-Congregations are doing – I was delighted to present Carlops Church with their 3 rd Eco-Award – this is an amazing achievement and well deserved recognition of all their hard work in helping to protect the environment.”
Carlops Church won a third award for its environmental work. The church won the independently assessed award for three core reasons.
Award assessors, Adrian Shaw, Climate Change Officer at The Church of Scotland and Alison Boyes, of Dunscore Parish Church and a Director of Eco-Congregation Scotland, commented,
“When awarding the prestigious Eco-Congregation Scotland award, it is normal for assessors to suggest new ideas for congregations at assessment meetings but in this case we were moved to just say ‘Keep calm and carry on’ such was the professionalism and passion of the work we found at Carlops.”
Eco-Congregation Scotland is an ecumenical charity, which helps congregations link environmental issues to their faith and to take action in their church and local community. There are nearly 300 Eco-Congregations in Scotland. In addition to providing support and advice on environmental issues and providing an environmental audit of the church, Eco-Congregation Scotland offers a programme to enthuse and equip churches to weave environmental issues into their life and mission in an enjoyable and stimulating way.