Category Archives: Perth

Scottish Episcopal Church General Synod 2020

Show your support today

Picture courtesy St Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh: Provost The Very Rev’d John Conway is among supporters of the Scottish Churches COP26 Pledge at the active Edinburgh eco-congregation

Scottish Churches COP26 Pledge:
Divestment and the Just and Green Recovery

On the eve of this year’s General Synod, Eco-Congregation Scotland welcomes moves by the Scottish Episcopal Church to consider further steps on divestment from fossil fuels and work towards achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030.

The approach being considered by the General Synod, taking place online this weekend, complements the Scottish Churches COP26 Pledge launched by Eco-Congregation Scotland with Christian Aid ScotlandOperation Noah and Friends of the Earth Scotland.

Please sign in support today as an individual or on behalf of a church or organisation at:

The new Pledge demonstrates support across Scotland’s churches for urgent action on fossil fuels divestment, responding to the climate crisis and supporting a just and green recovery from Covid-19 as we approach the COP26 climate talks in Glasgow next year:

“We believe it is unethical for Churches to invest in an industry that is harming the planet, as seen in ever more extreme and life-threatening weather events locally and globally.”

“We support the campaign for fossil free Churches and are conscious of the increasingly severe impact of the climate crisis, especially on people living in poverty and on all life in our common home.”

“We recognise the urgency of the need for a just transition from fossil fuels to clean alternatives that offers jobs and wellbeing to people in Scotland and across the world.”

“We commit ourselves to using our financial resources to contribute to the flourishing of God’s creation, both now and for generations to come.”

Individuals are called to register support for the pledge, reviewing their own investments or pensions and seeking ethical alternatives.

Congregations are asked to work towards divesting their own funds and call on national and regional bodies – including Dioceses and Presbyteries – to divest from fossil fuels.

Denominations, regional Church bodies and Christian organisations in Scotland are called to commit to divestment within the next two years, seeking investments with positive environmental benefits and which support a just and green recovery.

Please sign in support today as an individual or on behalf of a church or organisation at:

We thank the Scottish Episcopal Church and value our partnership with the Church in Society Committee, supporting Eco-Congregation Scotland and particularly the work of the ecumenical Environmental Chaplaincy.

We appreciate the considered work of the Ethical Investment Advisory Group formed last year and recognise that the climate crisis is increasingly important across the Church’s Boards and Committees and for every church in every Diocese. 

We look forward to our partnership developing further as our work grows in seeking to support all Scotland’s churches and denominations on care for God’s creation.

“Roadworks” Advent II: Isaiah 40:1-11, Mark 1:1-18
Please watch a major reflection for Sunday 6th December 2020, the second Sunday of Advent, from Eco-Chaplain Rev David Coleman, for you to view and share.

Thanks also to Urzula Glienecke (1st December) from Edinburgh’s Greyfriars Kirk and Grassmarket Community Project, the Eco-Chaplain (2nd December and 3rd December) and Eleanor Harris (4th December) from St John’s Episcopal Church in Edinburgh for the latest contributions to our Advent Calendar.

The Judge to Cheer the Forest” offers a 1-2 minute reading and reflection until Christmas Eve. Please view and share the items daily at Eco-Chaplain online and Eco-Congregation Scotland, on FacebookTwitter and YouTube every day of Advent.

Jesus, the Eucharist and the Power within the Universe for Transformation
Saturday 5th December 2020, 11.00am
Please email for the Zoom link to join the third prayerful reflection from Sister Mary Kilpatrick SND and Liz Snodgrass of For the Love of Creation Project. From “Who we are and our Kinship with all Creation”, then “Where we come from and our Story of Evolution” last month to reflecting now on “Jesus, the Eucharist and the Power within the Universe for Transformation”.

Global Theologies of Gender-Based Violence – the role of faith leaders
Monday 7th December 2020, 5.00pm
Join Christian Aid Scotland head Sally Foster-Fulton with Rt Rev’d Anne Dyer, Bishop of Aberdeen and Orkney, and friends around the world to mark 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. Inspirational speakers will discuss the role of faith communities and leaders in speaking out, sharing some of the creative ways gender-based violence is being challenged. 

Save money on your energy bills this winter
Tuesday 8th December 2020, 6.00pm6.40pm  Heating controls
Wednesday 9th December, 6.00pm6.40pm  Insulation
Thursday 10th December, 6.00pm6.40pm  Simple saving tips
Home Energy Scotland and the The Wise Group have organised three accessible webinars to help you stay warm for less this winter on heating controls and how to make the most of them, insulating your home to keep the heat in and simple changes you can make to your energy use which will save you money.

Glasgow City Region Climate Adaptation Strategy
Wednesday 9th December 2020, 7.00pm
8.00pm  Glasgow City Region
Friday 11th December 2020, 10.00am
11.00am  North and South Lanarkshire
Climate Ready Clyde is consulting until Christmas Eve on the draft Glasgow City Region Adaptation Strategy, seeking to ensure the region’s society, environment and economy are prepared and can flourish in the future climate.

The Variety of Life: Encouraging Biodiversity
Wednesday 9th December 2020, 7.30pm
Tayside Biodiversity Partnership coordinator Catherine Lloyd joins our Perth & Kinross and Angus & Dundee Local Networks for a relaxed discussion on next year’s potential for individual churches planting to encourage bees and other pollinators, supporting nature in maintenance of graveyards and welcoming swifts and bats.

We were delighted to hear that the Eco-Group at St Anne’s Scottish Episcopal and Methodist Church in Dunbar have still been meeting on a Wednesday morning every month thanks to Zoom video conferencing. Please get in touch if you would like support to meet online for your own church.

If your church is concerned about the environment and wants to get involved, it’s free to register and begin your journey as an eco-congregation. We also encourage your church to please consider membership, to become more active in the charity and support our Local Network activities. Please join online or print a form and post to us.

Please donate to help support our work and encourage growing interest in environmental activities across Scotland’s churches. If you or others in your church would like to receive this newsletter regularly, please subscribe.

Scottish Church Leaders’ Prayer
Join us at 7pm this second Sunday of Advent:

Living God,
In this season of Advent,
Speak to us in the wilderness.
Speak, even in the hard places,
And teach us to mark out the places where you have met with us.
Lord, in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

St Andrew’s Day thanks for your commitment and support

Join our movement today

Eco-Congregation Scotland is always keen to hear from local churches and today our team shares great examples of activities and events. Congregations across our movement continue their work through the pandemic, respecting restrictions while responding to local need and addressing environmental concerns.

We are also pleased to share key events this week organised by partners and coalitions. On St Andrew’s Day, as we celebrate Scotland’s patron who spread the Good News far and wide, we thank all who have attended and participated in a wide variety of recent activities and online meetings, here and globally. This has been crucial as we welcome the world to the COP26 Glasgow climate talks next November. Eco-Congregation Scotland and churches throughout the country have been represented well by so many of our volunteers. We value your involvement, interest and insight.

We also love to share stories from local eco-congregations, to celebrate your wide-ranging work and encourage us all in caring for God’s creation. We were delighted to hear that our 500th eco-congregation Faifley Parish Church is holding a regular Recycle Room every Friday with free clothes bundles, DVDs, books, baby equipment, cushions and bedding thanks to dedicated volunteers and large numbers of donations. Ellis’ facemasks and Elsie’s chutney, pictured below, have been popular and successful fundraisers too!

We look forward to celebrating registration 500 with Faifley Parish when COVID-19 local protection levels allow. A special welcome and thank you to all subsequent new registrations in recent months, taking us to 508 eco-congregations:

If your church is concerned about the environment and wants to get involved, please join our movement today. It’s free to register.

We also encourage membership for your church, to become more active in the charity and support our Local Networks. Membership is again free for smaller churches and up to £100 per year for congregations with the highest incomes, that’s only £8 per month or less than £2 per week.

All membership fees go directly to support Local Network activities through our Programme Coordinator work. It’s easy to join online or print a form and post to us. Please also consider making a one-off or regular donation to support our work as an individual too.

Inspired by our A Sanctuary for Swifts event two weeks ago – which you can watch again online – Central Borders Local Network coordinator Ian Skinner informs us Holy Trinity Melrose is installing a nesting box for swifts on the Trinity Centre. Specially designed for swifts, the box will be placed near the top of the north facing gable with a clear outlook towards Gattonside Hill on the far side of the Tweed. Another two boxes designed for house martins are being placed on the Centre’s east side. Ian adds: “We are looking forward to welcoming new visitors in the spring of 2021!”

A Just Transition for Scotland’s Housing is also available to watch online, our major open event with the Just Transition Commission and the Methodist Church in Scotland hosted by Stirling Methodist Church. Commissioners positively engaged with the well-attended event and points made throughout were recognised in their ongoing work, emphasising the importance of housing for Scotland to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2045.

Well done and thank you all Kinross Parish Church Eco-Congregation group volunteers who picked up a “terrifying” amount of litter pictured above last Saturday in the space of about an hour. We also congratulate St Mary’s Eco-Congregation TOA (Take One Action) Local group in Dalkeith, holding another successful film evening to watch and discuss “Catching the Sun“, exploring workers and business leaders racing to lead the clean energy future.

These are just some of the diverse environmental activities and interesting events across individual congregations and our Local Networks. Thank you again for your continuing support and that of every church volunteer and all our supporters. It is always appreciated, even more so this challening year. Happy St Andrew’s Day!

Isaiah 64: Ripping open the sky – We fade like leaves

An appropriately scary start to the Christian season most concerned with what is to come. Many thanks Scottish writer, academic and activist Alastair McIntosh on the first Sunday of Advent followed by Rev Julia Meason today, minister of Kirkwall East linked with Shapinsay, and to all opening our alternative Advent Calendar.

The Judge to Cheer the Forest is our ecumenical and varied video Advent Calendar online, offering a 1-2 minute reading and reflection until Christmas Eve. Please view and share the items daily at Eco-Chaplain online and Eco-Congregation Scotland, on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube every day of Advent.

Financing Climate Justice
Monday 30th November 2020, 12.00noon
Rich nations like ours have a duty to deliver a fair share of support for poorer countries on the front line of the climate crisis. Tune in to this Climate Fringe event to find out more.

Let’s talk about the climate emergency – Our Global Connections
Monday 30th November 2020, 7.30pm
How we live impacts on climate change and the lives of others. Join us to talk, pray and reflect on Our Global Connections, the November theme in our “Let’s talk about the climate emergency” resources.

Restraining Climate Change: What is the Role of Faith Communities?
Tuesday 1st December 2020, 7.30pm
Climate emergency, coronavirus and Brexit. How can we as faith communities work with others to build a just and green future? These are moments of great opportunity but also significant challenge. Hosted by St Columba’s-by-the-Castle Episcopal Church in Edinburgh, join the discussion with:

The first Change in a Time of Chaos science and faith webinar, a series of talks hosted by St Columba’s towards COP26 next November.

Glasgow City Region Climate Adaptation Strategy
Wednesday 2nd December 2020, 2.00pm  East and West Dunbartonshire
Thursday 3rd December 2020, 7.00pm  Young persons event

Climate Ready Clyde is consulting until Christmas Eve on the draft Glasgow City Region Adaptation Strategy, seeking to ensure the region’s society, environment and economy are prepared and can flourish in the future climate.

Advent (not Christmas countdown) Calendar 2019

Dear friends: as last year, I am preparing a series of video reflections, ‘freewheeling’ in a way I could not on behalf of a denomination, on the Lectionary readings for Advent. These will appear on the Facebook page ‘Advent with the Ecochaplain’  at 1 minute past midnight on each day of Advent. If you use Facebook, please do subscribe, and spread it around. Disclaimer: as I write, about a quarter of the ‘Days’ are prepared. All 24 will only happen barring unforeseen circumstance, but it’s good use of morning devotional time to prepare them.

Cherishing Churchyards Week, 3rd June – Sun 11th June 2017

Cherishing Churchyards week is an initiative of Caring for God’s Acre.  Primarily English/Welsh based, Scottish congregations are welcome to join in and register their events. Further information is available on this web page:

The Tayside Biodiversity Partnership would be very interested to know if any Eco-Congregations are keen to run an event this year – or if they would like to consider a Green Graveyard suite of events in Angus or Perth & Kinross to coincide with the event in 2018. Please let them know as they would be very pleased to help by providing leaflets, wildflower seeds, pens, pencils, etc.

Copies of the TBP’s Making Way for Nature booklet are still available and it can be downloaded here:



Would your church like to host a show about Cairo’s rubbish collectors?


The show “My Neighbourhood: Cairo’s Rubbish Collectors” by Christian Stejskal is on at the Edinburgh Just Festival on Friday 26th August. You can see the details here.

This show is a colourful personal journey from my birth city of Vienna to Ethiopia by foot, then into the lives of Cairo’s rubbish collectors, whom I met during this pilgrimage. After finishing my walk in Axum, I returned to Cairo and lived with the Zabbaleen. Supporting myself as a violinist at the Cairo Opera House, I spent five years taking photos and listening to stories of their joys, struggles, tragedies and small triumphs. Through seven spoken word vignettes, photos and violin music performed live, this show recounts lives of the Zabbaleen and my encounter with them.

However, you could have this show at your church on Friday 2 Sept or Sat 3 Sept. They are currently four shows planned in Edinburgh and Glasgow and the organisers would like to stage other one in another Scottish city.

The financial implications for the host would be “in-kind,” consisting of the following:

Donation of space for the performance, including use of video projector that can be plugged into a laptop, a head mic to amplify the spoken-word narrations, and a spotlight on the performer. If they lack this equipment, I can try to arrange to bring with us. Advertising and dissemination of information about the event.

If you are interested please contact Jamie Furniss