Local Christians Join National Climate Lobby

by Gerry Lynch last modified 14 Jun, 2015 06:01 PM

Christians from Salisbury and across the country join thousands asking MPs to make climate change a political priority

Thousands of Christians from different denominations will gather in Westminster next week, to speak up for the things they love - from surfing to rambling - which could be lost as a result of climate change.  

One group will be attending the Wednesday event from Salisbury, organised by Christian Aid, and will attend a national ecumenical service led by Bishop Nicholas before lobbying their local MP, John Glen.

Rachel Lucas, one of the Salisbury people taking part, said, “We are blessed to live in a beautiful part of the country, yet so many of the things we take for granted are threatened by climate change. Our wildlife and the food our farmers grow is at grave risk, as is the lovely scenery we all enjoy walking through; indeed, potentially the future of human life on the planet is at risk. 

“We are heading to London next week to ask John Glen MP to press the government to take action on the climate.”

Bishop Nicholas said, “The changing climate is affecting all of us but is pressing hardest on those who are most vulnerable. As the church, we are called to serve the world's poorest people, that’s why we need to speak up and call our government to act now.” 

Christians from across the UK will join with a range of secular groups on the lobby. One of those travelling a significant distance is the Revd Dave Matthews, leader of a Fresh Expression church for surfers at Polzeath, North Cornwall.

Dave said, “I’m passionate about surfing, especially on my favourite beaches in Cornwall, but climate change is damaging coastlines and causing the sea level to rise, threatening beaches and the communities near them all around the world. In Bangladesh, people's land and crops are being washed away, making survival extremely difficult.”

“As a Christian, I believe the church has a moral imperative to speak up for the people most affected by climate change and to care for God’s beautiful creation. That’s why I campaign with Tearfund and why I’m going to lend my voice to many others calling our government to act.”

Bishop Nicholas will lead the ecumenical service, organised by Christian organisations involved in the Climate Coalition. It will be held at 12 noon at St Margaret's, Parliament Square, where people will have the opportunity to pray and worship together, while hearing from Bishop Nicholas about the church’s mandate to speak up about climate change, and the devastating effects climate change is already having on the world’s most vulnerable people.

Later in the day, thousands are expected to arrive in Westminster for the mass lobby, brought together by more than 100 agencies through The Climate Coalition.

People from all over the country will demand that their new MPs take a stand in the global fight against climate change and save the things they love. Ahead of the global climate summit to be held in Paris in December, campaigners from all walks of life will call on our politicians to work together across the political parties to:

  • Support a global climate change agreement that will end carbon pollution from fossil fuels by the middle of the century – critical if we are to keep global temperature rises below 2 degrees.
  • Ensure that the Sustainable Development Goals to be agreed by the United Nations this autumn reflect the need for ambitious action on climate change.
  • End climate pollution from coal use in the UK, on the way to phasing out carbon from our power system.
  • Invest in warm homes, sustainable transport, and clean energy.

The Climate Coalition’s combined membership totals more than 11 million people across the UK.

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