This weekend members of Christian Climate Action have been at Church of England Synod. There were three key reasons why we were there:
- Celebrating the recent announcement from the C of E that they are divesting from fossil fuel companies.
- Urging them to make the most of the shackles being off, and to speak out against the structural sin perpetuating the extraction of fossil fuels.
- Calling upon synod members to pass the Oxford Motion – which agrees to a more holistic creation care agenda.
On the Saturday, we stood outside of Synod building, handing out flyers, singing and talking to Synod members. We also held a service outside and invited members of Synod to join us. Rev Tim Daplyn led this service. Explaining why he was present he stated: “In witnessing to the delegates at general synod we are not yet pushing at a door which is firmly open and mark work needs to be done by all. We are looking forward to the time as Christians we will not needs to be lobbying other Christians. We all need to collaborate in taking the fight out to Government, commerce and industry.”
On this day Justin Welby came and spoke to us. He spoke about the five Marks of Mission being interlinking “like the 5 Olympic Rings – you cannot remove one of them”. He also stated that fossil fuel companies will not stop extraction, unless their was a strong disincentive, like a carbon tax. This was reported on in Premier News.
On the Sunday morning members of Christian Climate Action were outside of York Minster, where Synod members were having their morning worship. York is one of the few Anglican dioceses that are still investing in fossil fuels. We carried out a ‘die-in’ outside the building as Synod members were entering. This involved people laying down on the floor under white cloths, representing the people around the world who have already lost their lives to climate breakdown.
Sunday afternoon we returned to the University of York to hold a vigil outside of Synod. The debate on the Oxford Motion was postponed to Tuesday instead of being held on the Sunday, however we remained outside of the Synod and held prayers for the young people who stand to experience hardship and suffering as a result of climate breakdown.
Many Synod members thanked us for our witness and it is clear that our persistent presence over the years is having a positive impact. If you would like to see more actions like this at this critical time for our world, please consider supporting us financially – donate here.