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Views from the Vicarage...

Christian Aid and Climate Chaos in a Pandemic

This is Rose, who lives in Kitui in Eastern Kenya, read her story here. Some years ago, Sian and I spent some time as guests of the then Bishop of Machakos, a Diocese that is a near neighbour to Kitui.

Here you see Rose carrying large plastic water containers. This was a regular sight when we were in Kenya. You would see small children struggling to carry huge water containers. Then there was the problem of contaminated water sources. We saw for ourselves, water with a distict odour and a deep purple tint to it, being gathered up, to drink. Then we saw dried up river beds, where there was no water to be had, with animals dying nearby. Will YOU Stand with Rose – Stand against the elements?

Then there’s the effects of the pandemic on charitable collections. Remember the days when the red Christian Aid envelope would drop through the letterbox, to be collected a few days later. Such practise is not safe in today’s Covid stricken world. This too, makes helping Rose more difficult.

 

There are several ways that we can contribute.

You can visit the Christian Aid website and donate online:-  caid.org.uk/caw21  or call  0845 700 0300.

 

So what will your donations buy?

£10 – could buy a pair of taps at a water point which will be installed at an earth dam.

£42 – could buy 350kg of cement to build an earth dam.

£335 – could pay for a communal water point with two taps, situated at an earth dam, where people can collect water.

 

Continuing the climate crisis theme, at it’s recent meeting, the Governing Body of the Church-in-Wales set about declaring a Climate Emergency policy. Before it’s meeting in 2022 an Action Plan is to be drawn up. These are the main points to be contained within that Action Plan…

- Reduce power demand: Radically reduce heating and lighting in all our buildings; this would involve installing LED lighting, draught proofing, insulations etc.

- Use right kind of power: New forms of heating probably based on sustainably produced electricity. This also needs robust supplies to be in place and may include renewable energy production facilities on church land.

- Travel lightly: Travel and transport of staff, volunteers and parishioners to move away from petrol/diesel cars and use technology for meetings etc. Reduce international travel.

- Better use of our land: Enhance biodiversity across our estate by way of ‘offset’ including tree planting on glebe land.

- Zero Carbon Fellowship: Consider the food and drink we share, building on our Fairtrade work.

- Promote zero carbon agendas in the communities which we serve.

- Investment Policy.

Wherever we live in the world, our actions have an effect on God’s created order. We have a responsibility to help our friends and neighbours – neighbours like Rose in Kitui. Sian and I will forever hold fond memories of the area, it’s people and it’s problems.

A prayer for climate change:

You spoke into the silence
Light suffusing darkness.
You spoke into the silence
Blowing clean life giving air into the space
You spoke into the silence
Warmth and cold infusing the air
You spoke into the silence
Solid ground formed out of gushing water.
You spoke voice carrying over the sound
People, plants and animals came to life.
You spoke each creation balanced against the next so life would be abundant and sustainable.
You saw everything you had made and declared it to be very good.
You spoke choosing to give us humans stewardship over all that You had made.
We speak and act
Darkness of pollution limits light levels and damages the air we breathe.
We speak and act
Ground poisoned, burnt, stripped bare.
We speak and act
Spoiling, limiting, destroying quality of life and life itself.
We speak and act
Without hearing Your call over the noise of the world to be good stewards.
You speak. You create. You want us to be stewards of Your creation.
We come to You to re-learn how to care for the earth and people you have made.

Katrina Rowland, April 2017.

Will YOU stand together with Rose, through the work of Christian Aid, this Christian Aid Week, 9th – 16th May.

Your Friend and Vicar

Canon Phillip

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