Come and meet us for a coffee! We’re thrilled to be able to host our supporters at Augustine United Church this year for our Edinburgh churches drop-in session. Please join Christian Aid staff any time between 10:30am and 1pm on Wednesday 20 September for a cuppa and a chat. This is an informal time to meet other local Christian Aid supporters, ask questions of staff, and share ideas. For those able to stay a little longer, there will be an online event with our Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Watt, starting at 1pm. Anyone is welcome, so please do share this invitation and RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re planning to come along.
Eco-Congregation Scotland shares reflections this Holy Week and looks forward to celebrating an Easter message that brings ‘Good News to every Creature’. We also encourage job applications and campaign activities next week as we look further ahead to the Scottish Parliament election in May and the COP26 United Nations climate summit in November. Thank you for your continuing involvement and support of our activities and events. Wishing you in advance a very Happy Easter this weekend.
As many churches opened their doors for the first time since Christmas with changing coronavirus guidance, our Eco-Chaplain has also been sharing reflections online for devotional use this Holy Week, complementing local worship and prayer across Scotland:
Maundy Thursday – “Let the sea come and wash your feet”, a Holy Thursday footwashing reflection first shared last year, with scripture matched alongside images of our coasts and waters.
Good Friday – reflection on “The Dream of the Rood”, a dream in which the “True Cross” speaks in an ancient “heroic” Passion poem of Creation.
Easter Sunday – reading and reflection on Mark 16:9-20 “Dangerous Words”, live from 7am on 4 April 2021 and accessible any time after on our Facebook page.
David outlines the special reflection for Easter Sunday: “Exceptionally, this works from the neglected ‘old ending’ of Mark’s Gospel, which contains the Inclusive Commission of the Risen Christ to bring ‘Good News to every Creature’, as well as some other untamed and challenging verses.”
“It’s presented as a complement, not a substitute for your own local church events, and will premiere live on our Facebook page at 7am on Easter Sunday.”
Eco-Congregation Scotland is delighted to be working with Glasgow Churches Together and its COP26 Co-ordinating Group, a special ecumenical committee encouraging local churches, denominations and faith charities to co-operate in unity on activities and events relating to the city hosting the climate conference.
There is still time to apply for two exciting job opportunities to support the Glasgow Churches COP26 Co-ordinating Group, funded by Action of Churches Together in Scotland (ACTS), with applications sought by Easter Monday, 5 April 2021:
Glasgow Churches COP26 Ambassador Encouraging Churches to prepare for, engage with and be changed by COP26 coming to Glasgow. Self-employed consultancy basis for at least 40 days, April to 30 November 2021. Further information.
COP26 Administrator Support before and during COP26 to member and partner churches, 0.4 full-time equivalent. Co-ordinating hospitality and welcome, including offers of accommodation to individuals and premises to groups visiting Glasgow. Further information.
We are sharing work from coalitions we are members of and key partner organisations towards the Scottish Parliament elections on 6 May, encouraging candidates to hear directly on the demand for Scotland to do more in championing climate justice. At this training event policy experts and experienced campaigners will share the most effective ways for making your voice heard. There are three ways you can make a difference today:
1. Share the message Post this video on social media or share with your group chats.
As Scotland comes into the spotlight hosting COP26 in November 2021, it becomes imperative that our churches take action on the climate emergency. One of the most powerful ways we can encourage change is in talking, listening and telling our stories.
How we live has a direct impact on climate change and the lives of others. The way we choose to travel, the food we eat, the way we heat our homes, our continuing demands for goods and services and the way we deal with the waste produced all have a direct impact on other people.
Certainly the worst of the changes in weather patterns can be seen in other areas of the world producing severe storms and conversely severe droughts leading to famines and other humanitarian crises:
Pollution of water courses and air as other countries attempt to recycle our rubbish affecting the health of many people.
Effects of global warming on our oceans and on plants and animals threaten the web of life.
Inequalities can be seen too in the ability of countries to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic, with less affluent countries struggling to provide basic healthcare, sanitation and access to food.
THE SHEEP AND THE GOATS Matthew 25: 31-46 The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” It’s tough, but this is what we’re faced with. We know what our species is doing. “What you did to the Earth, you did to me!” You can watch our Eco-Chaplain Rev David Coleman reading and reflecting on this passage, also sharing how Pastor Martin may have differentiated sheep and goats…
In this month where leaders from many countries across the globe were to have converged on Glasgow for COP26 to consider how best to address the issue of climate change and agree a way forward working together, how will we respond to ensure a fairer world for current and future generations?
How do you feel when you hear about the effects of climate change on the planet and the effects it has on people’s lives?
As Scotland comes to the forefront of international attention, what message would you like the leaders to take home to their country about what is happening in this country?
Is it easy to adopt the kinds of changes that experts suggest we need to if we are to reduce our impact on the world’s climate?
What makes these easy/ tricky to do? (eg: eating less meat, reducing waste, insulating our homes, using public transport, changing the kinds of energy we use, buying Fairtrade goods)
Do you feel differently about any of these changes in the light of the pandemic? How have the views and behaviour of other people changed?
Join us to talk, pray and reflect on Our Global Connections, to help ensure a fairer world for current and future generations. Breakout discussions will ensure all taking part in small groups. Now and in coming months – let’s talk about the climate emergency. Please register here.
We appreciate this is a challenging time for many across all churches and communities due to COVID-19 restrictions. We are delighted to share good news over coming weeks from local eco-congregations, this weekend celebrating Eco-Congregation Scotland Award success in Aberdeenshire.
We value the excellent participation of so many volunteers and supporters in recent interfaith events and a range of meetings as we look forward to welcoming the COP26 climate conference to Scotland next November. We invite you to join a wide variety of online events and activities through the remainder of this November.
Thank you for all your efforts and continuing support as we pray, share and act together, caring for our common home.
Today we acknowledge the wonderful work of Inverurie West Parish Church. Congratulations to enthusiastic environmental team leader Joy Doorghen and all at Inverurie West on achieving our Silver Award recognising their commitment to caring for creation. You can read more about their Silver success on our website.
We will share more Award success stories in coming weeks and encourage every eco-congregation to apply, affirming your church’s environmental activities through online assessment. You are also welcome to join Inverurie West and our Eco-Chaplain this Sunday for a live at home service on the Church website and YouTube.
Many Christians mark this Sunday as the feast of Christ the King. Eco-Chaplain Rev David Coleman will be reflecting on Matthew 25:31-46: “A masterpiece of ‘end-time’ writing, the ‘sheep and the goats’ is perfectly directed at those who look to God for hope in a time of global crisis.”
Just Transition Commission members will share some of the emerging themes from their work to date, ahead of delivering their final recommendations to Scottish Ministers in early 2021. This will be your opportunity to explore and discuss their findings, and the solutions proposed to deliver a just transition in Scotland. The Commission was set up last year to give practical advice on how Scotland can meet ambitious climate change targets in a way that is fair for all.
The Climate Challenge Fund Gathering provides opportunities to learn, network and share experience on tackling climate change, bringing together over 200 CCF Grant recipients and local community-led groups including churches and faith projects. The evening will explore how community film nights can get people thinking about climate change, followed by the opportunity to watch and discuss a challenging film. Find out more and book Gathering and film tickets here.
This Sunday 22nd November, please join us and Christians across Scotland in prayer at 7.00pm.
Good Shepherd, Speak once more to our hearts And offer us vision and hope for days to come. Go before us Shepherd King And lead us into the future that you hold in your hands. Lord, hear us. Lord, graciously hear us
Eco-Congregation Scotland is inviting church volunteers in our Local Networks and supporters across the country to our online events and activities over the next fortnight. We are also pleased to share partner organisation events including the Prayer Service for Climate Justice and Just Transition Commission update.
Swifts are ancient and fascinating birds. Sadly their populations are on the decline and are now regarded as Amber conservation status. RSPB Scotland is encouraging Edinburgh as a place of sanctuary for these amazing birds – with support from the Scottish Power Foundation – and looking for churches to host swift nesting boxes. We will also hear from Huntly & District Swift Group, working hard to protect these wonderful birds in their local area. Wherever you live in Scotland, come and find out more about these amazing birds and the work being done to care for them.
We are encouraging Scotland’s churches, faith groups and local communities to offer hospitality and welcome for COP26 next year. Join this Climate Fringe gathering if you are interested in hosting events during COP26 or just want to find out more about opening your doors as a church, hall or local venue. Speakers at this meeting will take us through what we can expect, sharing previous COP experiences.
Faith and civil society groups from all over the world will need space for meeting, holding events and floor space for sleeping. This meeting is for those who manage venues, large or small, within an hour’s commute from Glasgow including places of worship and community halls or any group that has a meeting room that can be booked externally.
The Global Compact on Refugees, adopted by an overwhelming majority at the UN General Assembly in December 2018, directly recognises that ‘climate, environmental degradation and natural disasters increasingly interact with the drivers of refugee movements’.
At this online public event, members of the Just Transition Commission will share some of the emerging themes from their work to date, ahead of delivering their final recommendations to Scottish Ministers in early 2021. This will be your opportunity to explore and discuss their findings, and the solutions proposed to deliver a just transition in Scotland. The Commission was set up last year to give practical advice on how Scotland can meet ambitious climate change targets in a way that is fair for all.