The link between Ardrishaig Parish Church (an eco-congregation) and Montreat Presbyterian Church (an Earth Care congregation from North Carolina) has been mentioned in an article in Black Mountain News (part of the USA Today network):
Meanwhile, others from Montreat Presbyterian visited Scotland in 2015 for a much smaller scale meeting. As a result, the church has “twinned” with a congregation located in Argyll, 90 miles west of Glasgow.
Ardrishaig Parish Church is recognized as an “Eco-Congregation” of the Church of Scotland, and Montreat Presbyterian Church (MPC) is an “Earth Care Congregation” of the Presbyterian Church (USA). In a formal statement of cooperation the two similar-sized churches have agreed “to pray for and encourage each other’s ministry, to share ideas and promising and/or successful practices which may be our own or those of our larger communities, to be a voice for the care of creation within our communities and nations, and to pray and work for the day when all God’s people are united in loving care of the world we have been given.”
To read the full article Click Here.
A date for your diary – please note that the Eco group will be holding its Annual Coffee Morning on Saturday 16th January 2016, from 10.00 till 12.00 in the North Hall, Ardrishaig.
As usual, part the proceeds from this will be used towards Eco Group expenses, (for example, our membership of Eco Congregation Scotland, and costs which will be incurred in any projects we undertake, such as the development of the garden at the Church Hall).
This year, we are proposing to send the rest of the proceeds to the Toilet Twinning Scheme, run by TEAR Fund. This provides for the building of toilets, either for individual homes, (costing £60.00 each), or schools, (costing £240.00 for a block) specifically in rural areas in the developing world.
Here are some statistics about the need for proper toilets:
“Lack of access to clean water and proper sanitation traps people in poverty. Their health suffers and the prospect of developing economically remains far out of reach. Here are some of the hard facts:
- 2.4 billion people across the world don’t have somewhere safe to go to the toilet (WHO / UNICEF)
- 1 billion people don’t have access to any sanitation at all and openly defecate (WHO / UNICEF)
- There are 46 countries where at least half the population does not have access to proper sanitation (WHO)
- 748 million people lack access to clean, safe drinking water (WHO / UNICEF)
- Poor sanitation is one of the world’s biggest killers: it hits women, children, old and sick people hardest
- Every day, about 1,400 children under the age of five die of illnesses linked to unclean water and poor sanitation. That’s more than half a million a year – or about one a minute (UNICEF)
- Diarrhoea is the second biggest killer of children under five worldwide (CHERG)
- More than half of primary schools in developing countries don’t have access to water and sanitation. Without toilets, girls often drop out at puberty (UNICEF)
- The lack of a loo makes women and girls a target for sexual assault as they go to the toilet in the open, late at night. Many get bitten by snakes as they squat in the grass
- In Africa alone, people spend 40 billion hours every year just walking to collect water. Women and girls carry two-thirds of this burden
- Poor water and sanitation result in economic losses estimated at £153 billion annually in developing countries, or 1.5% of their GDP (UNICEF)
- For every £1 spent on a water and sanitation programme, £8 is returned through saved time, increased productivity and reduced health costs (UNDP)
- In 2000, 189 countries signed up to the UN Millennium Development Goals. The sanitation target for 2015 is currently way off-target and may not be met in sub-Saharan African for another 150 years”
The 2015 Local Networks Seminar took place in Dunblane on Saturday 26th September. This year the main themes discussed at the Seminar have been used to propose an exciting new way of providing web-based resources, which can be downloaded and printed out to encourage more participation in our congregations.
After considering what other resources are available, the ECS Board now plans to invite individuals / congregations / networks, with the relevant experience and expertise, to contribute to developing and writing the new resources.
Local Networks Seminar Report 2015 also lists a whole host of topics and speakers from networks all around the country (see Appendix 3). If you are not already involved in a network, take a look and see what you might be missing! Everyone is welcome at network meetings – you don’t have to be from a registered congregation. Full information about your local network can be found here.
Presentation given by John Ferguson from EcoideaM Ltd on 26th September at the Local Networks Seminar. A full report of the day will follow.
The presentation can be downloaded in PowerPoint format here: Eco Congregation Seminar Dunblane 260915
The attached file has info about this play, which will be having the first performance of its Scottish tour in Craignish Village Hall (Argyll) on 17 Nov 2015.
Please will you circulate/publicise this to all your contacts who are likely to be interested.
This Scottish tour will be at a time when Climate Change should be a very topical issue…just before the UN Paris Summit.
Learn more about the show here: http://ridinglights.org/baked-alaska/
This year’s Local Networks Seminar is being held on Saturday 26th September, 11am – 3.30pm at Dunblane Cathedral Halls. Please note the date, which is later in September this year.
The main topic for the day will be “After Paris – What happens next?”
The Climate Justice Baton Relay (see http://www.ecocongregationscotland.org/get-involved/events/baton-relay/) has been a huge success. The Baton has been (double!) booked every Sunday, and many dates in between, since its launch in April until it departs for Paris at the end of November. Congregations from Orkney to Dumfries have taken the Baton into their churches, schools and community centres, paraded it through the streets, taken it up mountains and on pilgrimages to spread the message that now is the time for Climate Justice.
John Ferguson of the Binn Eco Park has agreed to start the discussion by giving us an overview of the issues and how these relate to what we can do in church and community. John is a Christian, who formerly worked for the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency and is now running a ground breaking environmental business. He is an inspirational speaker with a wide knowledge of and insights into the issues. You can download a short biography for John here.
Trevor Jamison, our environmental chaplain will be offering some biblical and theological insights on the theme. There will also be time allowed for the usual exchange of news and views and networking between the networks.
A full programme for the Seminar is available for download here. Places are limited please therefore book your place by replying to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday 7th September.
For those unable to get to the Seminar we will be producing a Report of the day and consulting more widely on the outcomes.