One of the world’s greatest cathedrals has proven it’s green – not grim – up north. Located on one of the most significant Christian sites in Europe, York Minster has scooped a new environmental award.
Constantine was proclaimed Emperor while visiting the city in the fourth century. And now in the 21st century, A Rocha UK Chair Steve Hughes has proclaimed York Minster an Eco Church Bronze Award winner!
Steve presented the honour to York Minster at their main service on Easter Sunday – hot on the heels of St Paul’s Cathedral receiving their Eco Church Bronze award in January. Nearly 2,000 worshippers heard about the scheme and how York Minster took part.
The award is the culmination of a journey that started for York Minster in December 2014. At that time, a special group was formed to work with the Minster community as green advocates.
‘To help us on our way, Churches And Theology Director Dr Ruth Valerio came to York and provided inspiration for the Minster to take up the creation care challenge with A Rocha UK,’ said group member David Rees.
‘A delegation from York attended the Eco Church launch event at St Paul’s Cathedral and the Minster joined the initiative the same day!’
Said Steve Hughes, ‘When one of our greatest cathedrals becomes an Eco Church, it’s a good indicator that the wider world is sitting up and taking notice of this unique award scheme.
‘We’re thrilled to be presenting the Bronze Award to York Minster – probably just as much as they are to be receiving it! Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu has already championed the cause, particularly when he launched a “year of the environment” in 2011. Back then, bird nesting boxes were sent to every school and church in his diocese.
‘Now by presenting the Eco Church award, we trust we’re boosting the ongoing work of Dean of York Dr Vivienne Faull and her colleagues at York Minster, as they seek to care for the environment. We look forward to returning to present them with their silver or gold award in due course.’ (Pictured are – York Minster Pastor Rev Canon Michael Smith and York Minster Eco Church representative David Rees, with a view of the cathedral)