Environmental activists staged a protest today during a service of Holy Communion at Derby Cathedral. While the elements were being distributed to the congregation at the altar by the Dean of Derby, the Very Rev. Peter Robinson, during the 10:45 sung Eucharist on 4 Dec 2022, Mrs. Mary Smails (63) along with other protestors unfurled a banner in front of the sanctuary and held up placards protesting investments held by the Church Commissioners of the Church of England in energy stocks.
Mrs. Smails then spoke from the lectern berating the church’s energy investment policies. Dean Robinson continued the service without interruption, while vergers escorted the protestors outside the building.
Mrs. Smails told Derbyshire Live “what I did today was an act of repentance – it was a spiritual act”.
“If God so loved the world that he gave his only son as a sacrifice, what are we doing in response to that sacrifice in continuing to sacrifice the Earth and the people of God’s love on the altar of greed? The reason they are so angry today is not that we did an act of repentance in the church, it’s because I’m touching them where it hurts, and where it hurts is where the money is,” she said.
“They are addicted to money, they are addicted to greed and the only reason that they’re making tentative and belated attempts to cover their tracks and withdraw from fossil fuel investments is because of the disgust of people like me and the outcry against them. The church has lost all moral authority,” she claimed.