Over the last few years, I’ve been deeply stirred by the ecological crisis – the loss of habitats and species in Britain and the impact globally of climate change; like an ache in my heart and soul.
My wife, Tara and I live in the London suburbs; I work in central London (though that’s changed now with Covid) and Tara works locally. Our three kids are just out of or part way through University. As a family we’ve always enjoyed being outdoors, with favourite spots in the Lakes and on the Suffolk Coast for walking, climbing and sailing. As Christians we know we are called to work and care for God’s creation (Genesis 2:15); and we believe a Christian response to the ecological crisis is two-fold: to live rightly – at home and in our work – and to advocate for societal change.
A few years ago we began to make some changes to how we live – we don’t fly now, we cycle locally and take the train for longer journeys, we’ve just switched to an electric car, Tara manages an allotment and we’re eating less meat than we used to – but we’re still on a journey to a less-is-more low-carbon way of life. We believe it’s an important part of Christian discipleship that we live our lives – as individuals and in communities – in a way that doesn’t harm God’s creation, that even allows it to flourish and thrive.
So adopting a sustainable personal lifestyle is important. But the scale of the threat of climate change and species loss also demands societal change.
Last year I joined the Extinction Rebellion and Christian Climate Action campaigners in London in April and October and again this year in September. I haven’t joined a protest or campaign since Jubilee 2000 20 years ago and didn’t know what to expect. It was deeply moving to be with both Christians and non-Christians in an intentional, non-violent, self-sacrificial call for change. It’s not perfect, but it’s already changed the conversation and brought about widespread declarations of climate emergency.
This Meet the Community article was written by Paul K for the Wild Christian email, ‘Nature and action.’
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