The Eco Church Award is broken down into categories: Worship, Building, Land, Community and Global, and Lifestyle. The Award helps your church think about all these areas and how to modify or change practice in order for positive benefits for our environment.
Some things are easy to do, and some things take a bit more time and thought. But we have enjoyed the journey so far and we are looking forward to where it will take us next. Come and join us.
Currently we have achieved the following in each of the categories:
- Worship and Teaching – Silver
- Building – Silver
- Land – Not applicable
- Community and Global – Bronze
- Lifestyle – Bronze
Due to St Nicolas not having any land this category is not applicable, though as a church we are hoping to utilise roofs for beehives, under take tree planting on other projects and encourage the local council to maintain the graveyard in an environmentally friendly way, to encourage biodiversity.
As a Church we are working towards our Silver Award.
Sustainability at St Nicolas Church
What is ‘sustainability’, and why is it important?
‘Sustainability’ is about safeguarding the health of the planet and conserving natural resources. It’s vital because humans are now consuming resources at a rate that is not sustainable and having a direct impact on the earth’s climate. The world’s poorest are suffering the effects of this first, so it’s also an issue of social justice. It’s an important issue for us because we believe that being followers of Jesus includes a responsibility to care for God’s creation and to promote justice.
What are we doing about it?
Our current activities at St Nicolas Church include:
- Organising opportunities to learn about specific aspects of sustainability and ideas for how we can respond as a church.
- Including environmental and social justice issues in our teaching, worship and prayer life.
- Ensuring our church buildings are as environmentally friendly as possible, and seeking to buy the items we need from companies that share our environmental and ethical concerns. Supporting each other to live more sustainably, and to consider the potential impact of how we live on our global neighbours.
- We have twinned one of our toilets and are now looking to expand our twinning, our next twinning will be to twin our taps.
We are thrilled that our efforts so far have earned us a Bronze ‘Eco Church’ Award, via an award scheme by Christian conservation charity A Rocha.
How can I get involved?
Among other things, you could help to maintain the wildlife provision in the churchyard, take part in our biannual churchyard working parties and share with us your ideas about how we can operate more sustainably. We are all stewards of God’s creation, and it is our responsibility to care for God’s creation, we can all take action in our everyday lives and choices to tread more lightly on the planet.
Why not try:
- Eating less meat or selecting meat that impacts the environment less.
- Buying food consider LOAF (Locally grown, Organic, Animal-friendly, Fairtrade), eating seasonally or even growing your own.
- Recycling more, and composting your food waste
- Buying less and better – choosing ethical brands
- Avoiding single-use plastics wherever possible
- Driving less – share lifts, cycle or take the bus
- Installing solar panels
- Buying a Hybrid or even an electric car
- Emailing your MP about issues you care about
- Keeping yourself informed about the issues, and telling others
- Have you ever undertaken an environmental lifestyle audit?
- Change your energy provider to a sustainable source.
- Buy Fair Trade produce where possible
- Undertake a personal carbon footprint audit and try to improve it
The Spirituality of Creation
Our journey has been inspired by the spirituality of St Francis- he sought to live in harmony with the created world and saw that all that was made was good, blessed and holy.
To find out more or to get involved please contact Peter Rogers, Dean Moore or one of the Wardens.