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Taking Christian Climate Action

by Michael Ford last modified 28 May, 2021 07:46 PM

Last week a group from Christian Climate Action, including two clergy from the Diocese of Salisbury, Revds Jonathan Herbert and Hilary Bond, were part of a peaceful protest outside Church House in London.

Taking Christian Climate Action

Jonathan and Hilary praying outside Salisbury Cathedral

Annual General Meetings for oil and gas companies Shell and Exxon had taken place around the same time.

Hilary explains:

"The Church of England has holdings in both and Christian Climate Action has responded with prayer and action.

"This week there was silent prayer on the pavement outside Church House in London, but the call for the church to divest has spread, and around the country people prayed outside the local churches and cathedrals.

"A liturgy of lament for the part the Church Commissioners are playing in the desecration of Creation was prayed, and the clergy were 'anointed' with fake oil as these words were spoken over them:

I anoint you in the name of the Church Commissioners who give you a pension. May Christ forgive us both for the destruction it will cause.

Taking Christian Climate Action- protest outside Church House, London
Protest outside Church House, London

"In Salisbury a few members of Christian Climate Action met to pray in silence in solidarity with those doing the same thing in other places, and in the hope that the church commissioners will acknowledge that trying to change Exxon from the inside as shareholders has not worked, and that it is now time to divest."

Jonathan said:

"Last week it was a profound experience to be anointed with dirty oil and made me realise my complicity and that of the Church Commissioners and companies like Shell or Exxon in damaging God’s Creation.

"It made me more determined than ever to pray and act for the urgent and radical action that is required from government corporations and each one of us if we are to protect the Earth and its most vulnerable people."

In the name of your Son,
We look to overturn the tables of injustice,
We seek to promote economic systems that will safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life on earth. Lord, have mercy.

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