Janet`s June letter to the Community

Environmental issues are in the news.  The problem can seem overwhelming.  Can we take some small steps?

I opened my fridge this week and realised that, once again, I had food that could only be composted or thrown away.  It is a struggle.  Sometimes it’s because I have an unexpected change of plan, but more usually it’s because I just don’t pay enough attention to what I buy and when I need to use it.  According to WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme), which campaigns and works with organisations, businesses and wider society to reduce waste, the UK wastes about £20 billion of food every year.  That is a terrible indictment of our throwaway society in a world where millions still suffer hunger and the effects of starvation over the long term.  It is true that food retailers and producers need to change practice, and steps are being taken, but we need to do our bit too. 

On a related point, it was recently brought to my attention that our use of polystyrene cups for tea and coffee in church was hardly environmentally friendly.  We are not in a position at the moment to use washable crockery as we have no proper facilities for hygienic washing-up.  So – when you come to church, bring a takeaway cup!  We can do it.  I thought I’d never get back into the habit of taking shopping bags with me when I went to the supermarket, but I now manage it nearly all the time.  Far fewer environmentally damaging single-use plastic bags.  So – it’s easy – bring a reusable cup!  It just happened that this came up just as we received a mailing from the Prison Fellowship, one of the charities we support, with some marketing materials for their 40th anniversary.  And one of the products on offer was a takeaway cup. They are £6 each, with the money going to an excellent cause, and the opportunity for us to reduce our waste into the bargain.  Brilliant.  We have ordered some and there will be some spare.

Why does all this matter for Christians?  Because God has given us stewardship of his earth and we will be called to account for how we have carried out that responsibility.  One of the great truths of the Gospel is that it is possible for people to change.  So, I’m working on not wasting food – and remembering my takeaway cup!

With every blessing,


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