Ideas for Action – Churchyard conservation
Practical Ideas and Advice to Care for Church Grounds and Land
From Genesis: The Lord took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to till it and look after it. Genesis 2:15 to Revelation The leaves of the trees are for the healing of the nations Revelation 22:2b God’s word reveals that the world is a part of God’s continuing creation and that the people of God have a particular responsibility to care for the earth.
With varying degrees of success and failure, the people of God from Adam and Eve to Christians today, have tried to live up to this calling. At the start of the 21st century, environmental issues are one of the most important issues facing the world. In the face of many environmental challenges it has never been so important for churches to demonstrate their care for God’s creation in practical and spiritual ways, including managing the land around their church premises.
Download the latest version: Churchyard Conservation
- The Living Churchyard by David Manning, published 2003
- A Gospel of wild Flowers by Anthony Foottit, published 2006
Church Wildlife Survey Activity
- The Christian Ecology Link has shared a Church Wildlife Survey tool aiming to involve people in your church in Wildlife Conservation. Click on the links to download the 4 page document: WORD | PDF. It was created at the ECEN 9th Assembly in 2012. If you choose to use this tool please share your results with Christian Ecology link by filling in this online survey: www.surveymonkey.com/s/KYQCDFK
Managing the Churchyard and the Wildlife in it
- Caring for God’s Acres – A wealth of useful information on there to help with managing churchyards.
- British Lichen Association – information about the fantastic Churchyard Survey project. Churchyards are one of the most important habitats for lichens and very worth taking care of.
- Natural History Museum – a post code search engine where you can find out what plants are native to your local area.
- Dry Stone Walling Association – provides training courses and useful information.
- Trees for Cities – Could you plant some trees, and need advice and help? Call them on 0207 587 1320 to find out more.
Companies who sell seeds for native wildflowers: Scotia Seeds
Quiet Space to Rest and Pray
Fosters the provision of quiet spaces, small and large, creating sanctuaries of stillness and refreshment. Could your churchyard be a quiet space in your locality?
Websites that help you start your own allotment or help you find land to start allotment activities: National Society of Allotments and Leisure Gardeners Limited | Federation of City Farms & Community Gardens
- The Community Composting Network – supports and promotes community composting.
- Zero Waste Scotland – Scottish Government funded project to help everyone to reduce, reuse and recycle – includes the Home composting campaign.
Volunteering Oppotunities & Grants
- The Conservation Volunteers (TCV – previosuly known as BTCV)
Contact your local group to find out if they are able to offer advice and/or help in managing your churchyard for conservation and biodiversity or to get involved.
You can either join in with a volunteering project, or get a grant to run your own activities that will help protect and restore Scotland’s beautiful natural habitats. You can apply for grants of up to £500.
Tayside Green Graveyard Initative
Particularly interesting to Tayside congregations. You can download the information leaflet here.
Note on using the Ideas for Action
Ideas for Action have been designed to fit into church life and support and enhance church mission. They were designed collaboratively with churches to provide a resource that is not a textbook, but a toolkit, to suit all the different varieties of church life represented in the Eco-Congregation programme.
All congregations using our Ideas for Action should first register, and registered churches can also order printed copies. Find out how to register, or contact us if you’d like to know more.
All our resources may be freely copied and distributed within your church, but please accredit Eco-Congregation.