There was an item in the news last week that younger church-going people were complaining that the church doesn’t say anything about Climate Change. I’m not sure how large a sample the journalist who composed that piece was interviewing, or where they were based, but awareness of Climate Change is very much something of which the wider church is aware. Groups like Christian Aid, Tearfund, SCIAF, Cafod etc refer to it regularly in the material they produce – sharing stories of individuals and communities around the world who are experiencing the effects of Climate Change on agriculture, water supplies etc as well as devastating drought, wildfires or flooding. They also provide challenges to people to adopt changes in their life-styles (use of transport, ‘Green Energy’, reduction in meat and dairy consumption etc), and provide means to lobby governments and businesses to change their policies and practices. There are things that individuals can do – from recycling and not dropping litter to making changes in lifestyle – that individually make only a very small impact on Climate Change, but cumulatively can make a big change. Major change needs to come from government and businesses (including agriculture), but costs a lot of money and impacts on livelihoods (which is probably why successive governments around the world have avoided the issue for a long time). Change is planned over the next 20-30 years, which will affect the daily lives of us all (like Climate Change!), and will affect church communities too, with things like heating. ‘Building back’ after the pandemic gives us a special opportunity to address ‘Climate Change’ issues. There are questions we could ask candidates in the forthcoming Scottish Parliament elections about what they would do. How much do we care, about folk around the world today, or the young folk who are at school or nursery who will inherit what we leave behind? Are we ready for change, are we ready to lobby for change?
Lord, at its best this planet is stunningly beautiful and amazingly inter-connected. But we have spoiled and marred so much of it, with our rubbish, our pollution and our impact on the Climate. We are sorry. Help us to do our bit to care for this planet, the one we will leave to our grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Inspire governments to be bold in what they plan to do. Help us to remember those suffering the impacts of Climate Change now, and those working to help them cope