Tag Archives: Scottish Episcopal Church

Climate Sunday

Join our special Scottish launch

Climate Sunday – Scottish launch
Monday 22nd March 2021

7.30pm – 8.30pm

Join us for a special Scottish launch of Climate Sunday, providing focus in the year of the COP26 climate conference for churches committed to action combatting climate change.

Local congregations are encouraged to hold a special Climate Sunday service on any Sunday over the months leading up to the start of September, with free resources for every tradition and style of worship.

An initiative of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI), Climate Sunday calls on local churches to take one or more of the following three actions:

Hold a climate-focused service, to explore the theological and scientific basis of creation care and action on climate, to pray, and to commit to action. Explore our resources and the Climate Sunday website for inspiration and worship resources to suit all church traditions. Please register your service so we can count you in!

Make a commitment as a local church community to taking long term action to reduce your own greenhouse gas emissions. Use Climate Stewards‘ new 360°carbon calculator for churches and register as an eco-congregation – or work towards an Eco-Congregation Scotland Award.

Speak up
Use your voice to tell politicians that you want a cleaner, greener, fairer future at the heart of plans to rebuild a strong economy. Read and sign the ‘The Time Is Now’ declaration both as a church and as individuals.

Climate Sunday culminates with a major online service in Glasgow on Sunday 5th September 2021, the first Sunday in Creation Time, to share church commitments across the nations and pray for bold action with courageous leadership at COP26 in the city this November.

Organised by Churches Together in Britain and Ireland (CTBI) with backing from a range of denominations and charities in CTBI Environmental Issues Network, we are encouraging more Scottish support for Climate Sunday and all churches to pray and act in the run-up to COP26.

Join Climate Sunday project coordinator James Anthony to hear all about the initiative – with great ideas on how you can worship, commit and speak up through your local church.

Please register now for the link to join us for this special Scottish launch:


“We need to take action as Christians who care for God’s creation, tackling the climate emergency with urgency now and for future generations. When we welcome thousands from around the world, online or in person to COP26, we can all demonstrate that we are taking action and leading by example in our own church and across the country.”

“We all share a unique opportunity this year for transformational change, taking practical steps to change our own behaviour and calling on governments to agree global action when they gather in Glasgow. Climate Sunday helps link this directly with our spiritual life, focussing local churches on the environment in worship, prayer and action.”

Eco-Congregation Scotland chairperson Mary Sweetland

On the 5th Sunday in Lent, our digital visiting preacher Rev David Coleman joins the Netherlorn Churches – Kilbrandon, Kilchattan, Kilmelford and Kilninve in Argyll – with a reflection on John 12:20-33 ‘The Tipping-point’

All our worship material is now shareable for any church on Eco-Chaplain onlineFacebook and our website where we are building a catalogue behind the scenes – and fits perfectly with a Climate Sunday service.

This coming Sunday 21st March at 7pm we also encourage our volunteers and supporters to join Christians in prayer across Scotland marking the anniversary of the first coronavirus lockdown.

Anglican Communion Webinar
COP26, Divestment and Investment for Climate Justice

Thursday 25th March 2021
7.00pm – 8.30pm

Register at this link

Eco-Congregation Scotland joins the Anglican Communion Environmental NetworkOperation NoahChristian Aid and Tearfund as organisers of this global Anglican Communion Webinar. Among the speakers is Very Revd John Conway, Provost of St Mary’s Cathedral in Edinburgh, on the Cathedral divesting from fossil fuels and next steps in the Scottish Episcopal Church.

This follows our recent, well-attended ‘Scottish Churches’ Webinar: COP26, Divestment and Investment in the Just and Green Recovery‘ which you can now view online.

The Seabin Project

St Martin of Tours’ Episcopal Church in the Gorgie/Dalry area or Edinburgh has an active Eco-Group keen to share news and encourage support for its Sea Bin Project. Liz Moir writes:

2020 was the Scottish Year of Coasts and Waters which focussed particularly on the inland waters and the seas which surround Scotland. Last June St Martin’s Eco-Congregation group had hoped to visit the Coasts and Waters exhibition at the Scottish Fisheries Museum in Anstruther, Fife but travel restrictions prevented this. Still, it gave us food for thought which led to the St Martins Eco-Group considering a project to help combat the increase in plastic waste contaminating our oceans and waters.

One of our group, Stuart Campbell, came up with the idea of funding a Seabin – a device which looks rather like a long tube, containing an automated pump which draws water through the tube, catching the plastic debris in an internal net which can then be retrieved and disposed of. It also has a sponge which will take in a small oil or diesel spill. The Seabin can be bolted onto a pontoon in a harbour or marina (see photo attached) so it can move with the tide helping to keep the water clear of debris. It needs to be connected to an electricity supply, and obviously needs regular maintenance to check it is working correctly and to remove the rubbish.

There are at present relatively few in Scotland. The first one was installed in the North East at Banff Harbour. Stuart has supplied a photo from a recent visit.

Another is on the West Coast at Mallaig Harbour and there is a possible for MacDuff Harbour. Hopefully there will be others but in the meantime, we in St Martin’s think this is something worth pursuing.  

First of all we have to find a harbour which would accept the Seabin, which has a suitable source of electricity, and which has staff or volunteers willing to maintain the bin and dispose of the rubbish it collects.  It is therefore necessary that we work collaboratively.

Each Seabin costs around £3000, plus installation charges, which is a significant sum.  As our usual routes for fund-raising at St Martin’s – coffee mornings, home baking, special events, fund-raising lunches, etc – are not feasible at the moment, we will have to find other sources of funding. One option is crowd-funding, but for this to be attractive to donors, we need to find a suitable site for the Seabin, show how it will improve the surrounding water, benefit the harbour or marina, local wildlife and the wider community and visitors.  There are many things to consider but we are already working on a number of these and as we’ve had some encouraging feedback, we hope to proceed with this project.

Should anyone wish to offer advice or guidance please do not hesitate to contact St Martin’s Eco-Congregation Group: ECO@stmartinsedinburgh.org.uk

St Martin’s Episcopal Church, 232 Dalry Road, Edinburgh EH11 2JG

This link leads to the short (1 min 50) video which describes the Seabin and how it works. 

Scottish Episcopal Church votes to go net zero by 2030

Urgent action to be taken in response to the global climate emergency

Christian environmental and development charities Eco-Congregation Scotland, Christian Aid and Operation Noah today joyfully welcome the decision of the Scottish Episcopal Church, at their General Synod, to set a 2030 net zero carbon emissions target. 

The motion was proposed by Rev’d Elaine Garman, Interim Convener of the Church in Society Committee for the Scottish Episcopal Church. Speaking ahead of the motion being carried, she said, ‘We are in a climate emergency… We all must act and act now. As a Church we must lead… Our motion today is designed to enable the Scottish Episcopal Church…in reducing our negative impact on our climate… We can be part of Scotland’s preparations for the COP26 climate summit next year.’ 

The motion, passed by General Synod, reads: ‘That this Synod, expressing the need for urgent action in relation to the global climate emergency, call on the Church in Society Committee, working in conjunction with other appropriate bodies, to bring forward a programme of actions to General Synod 2021 to resource the Scottish Episcopal Church in working towards achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030.’

The decision to set a 2030 net zero target is especially significant as Glasgow prepares to host the UN climate talks, COP26, in November 2021.


The Provost of St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral in Edinburgh, The Very Rev’d John Conway, welcomed the motion: ‘This is an important first step for the Scottish Episcopal Church, showing our commitment to action in the face of the depth of the climate crisis. Responding to the climate emergency is the most urgent task facing us all, requiring all the spiritual and intellectual resources available. To speak with any authority about that spiritual task of living more simply, however, requires us to put our own house in order, and this motion sets us on that road. I look forward to the resources offered to help us all move to being carbon neutral in 10 years time.’

In June 2019, the Scottish Episcopal Church General Synod voted to change its ethical investment policy following a motion proposed by the Rev’d Diana Hall, Rector of St Anne’s, Dunbar. The motion stated that ‘the ethical investment policy be updated to reflect the moral imperative to divest fully from fossil fuels’.

Since then, an Ethical Investment Advisory Group (EIAG) has been established. which gave its first report to General Synod today. The report stated that the Church has sold its direct investments in fossil fuel companies, but continues to invest in fossil fuels indirectly through its pooled funds.

At General Synod, there were calls for the Scottish Episcopal Church to publicly announce its commitment to divest from fossil fuels and to complete the divestment process as soon as possible. In his speech to the General Synod, The Very Re’vd John Conway welcomed the work done to date by the EIAG and asked the Church’s College of Bishops to sign the Scottish Churches COP26 Pledge: Divestment and the Just and Green Recovery, which was recently launched by Eco-Congregation Scotland and other partners.

We are really pleased to see that our supporting Churches are backing the priority to aim for net zero by 2030, which will bring changes to local congregations and their members.

Mary Sweetland, Eco-Congregation Scotland chairperson

The decision of the Scottish Episcopal Church to reach net zero emissions in the next decade follows the Church of England decision to set a 2030 net zero carbon target in February 2020. Both are in the worldwide Anglican Communion, a family of churches in more than 165 countries.

The Church of Scotland set a 2030 net zero target at the General Assembly in October 2020 when its Faith Impact Forum successfully proposed ‘for the Church to transition both locally and nationally to net zero carbon emissions by 2030’. Many local authorities have also made this pledge, including the City Councils of Edinburgh and Glasgow.

Mary Sweetland, chairperson of Eco-Congregation Scotland, said: ‘We are really pleased to see that our supporting Churches are backing the priority to aim for net zero by 2030, which will bring changes to local congregations and their members.’

Sally Foster-Fulton, Head of Christian Aid Scotland, said: ‘Only this week the Secretary General of the United Nations told the world we have a climate emergency which is impacting most heavily on the world’s most vulnerable people. We know all too well here at Christian Aid that those who have done the least to cause the problem suffer the most. And so it’s really encouraging that today the Scottish Episcopal Church has decided to commit to net zero emissions by 2030. As 2020 draws to a close, we can look ahead to COP26 in Glasgow alongside our Church partners in Scotland, as they continue to pursue decisions that will lead to climate justice for those living on the sharp end of the climate emergency.’

Christian Aid holds a vision of a better world, free from poverty and climate change. For over ten years, Christian Aid Scotland has been campaigning for the UK and Scottish Governments to take climate change seriously for the benefit of those who are impacted first and worst by its effects.  Operation Noah is a Christian charity working with the Church across all Christian denominations to inspire action on climate change.

James Buchanan, Bright Now Campaign Manager at Operation Noah said: ‘It is wonderful news that the Scottish Episcopal Church has set a target of reaching net zero emissions by 2030. In order to demonstrate leadership on the climate crisis ahead of the UN climate talks in Glasgow next year, it is vital that the Scottish Episcopal Church supports a just and green recovery from Covid-19 by completing divestment from fossil fuel companies and investing in the clean technologies of the future.’

The motion passed by the Scottish Episcopal Church General Synod reads as follows: ‘That this Synod, expressing the need for urgent action in relation to the global climate emergency, call on the Church in Society Committee, working in conjunction with other appropriate bodies, to bring forward a programme of actions to General Synod 2021 to resource the Scottish Episcopal Church in working towards achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030.’

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 manager@ecocongregationscotland.org 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.