Janet`s July 2020 letter to the Community


The incidence of Covid-19 appears to be falling: fewer infections, fewer hospital admissions and fewer deaths.  The virus has not gone away, but for the moment it appears to be under some sort of control.  But there are, of course, other threats to our lives and wellbeing – and these haven’t disappeared because of coronavirus.  We know that we are dramatically over-using and exploiting the world’s resources and that this is having a catastrophic effect.  Greta Thunberg, the young Swedish climate activist, suggests that climate change needs to be treated with the same urgency as the coronavirus crisis.  Think how different life would be if we and the politicians took that seriously!

For the Christian Church, one of the “Five Marks of Mission” is that we should “strive to safeguard the integrity of creation, and to sustain and renew the life of the earth”.  It is an issue of justice – for future generations and for the poorer nations of the world, who suffer most from climate change – as well as an issue of responsibility towards God’s creation.  We are called not just to do what is best for ourselves in the short term, but to seek to ensure that our actions protect the world that God has made, and those just scraping a living in ferociously difficult circumstances, and those in generations yet to come.


When we consider these issues, it is tempting to think that we as individuals can do nothing to change things.  Perhaps we can’t have a major effect.  But we can be part of changing the prevailing culture.  We can ask the right questions.  We can take small steps that might help us to influence society to take bigger steps.  There is thought-provoking material in the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent Book, Saying Yes to Life by Ruth Valerio, and in the Diocese of Chelmsford’s Lent Lectures, available on the website at:  https://www.chelmsford.anglican.org/lent-lectures-2020. 


What small steps could you take to live more gently on the earth?  Walk a bit more and take fewer car journeys?  Use less water?  Eat less meat?  Turn the thermostat down a little when we need heating again.  I hope that later in the year we will have the opportunity to think more about these issues – and give them the same kind of attention as we’ve been forced to give to Covid-19! 


With continued prayers and every blessing for you all,   Janet 

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