Martin Brown Community Participation Coordinator for CAFOD
I was recently interviewed by someone doing a research project on the approach and attitude of churches towards climate change. It was a very interesting set of questions and the most was left for the end: ‘What really makes the difference between a church being active or not?’
During the interview we talked about different priorities that different Christians or Catholics have and how high ‘care of creation’ ranks in those priorities.
We talked about Pope Francis’ letter, Laudato Si’ (on the care of our common home), his call to action and how he joins together the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor. We talked about how one of the chapters is called ‘The Gospel of Creation’ – how God is revealed to us in creation and how creation itself is a good thing. We talked about how this Gospel is under threat and how strongly we would act if humanity were gradually cutting bits out of the Gospel according to John or Matthew.
A small crowd gathered today in St John’s Church Horsham to speak up about climate change. As part of the Climate Coalition, CAFOD supporters around the country have been asking their MP’s to highlight the importance of climate change to the Prime Minister.
In Horsham we started with a cup of tea and sharing our thoughts about climate change
We then planted ourselves a seed or two in a pot of the most ethical compost that could
Some plant pots
be found and took them home. There were some great conversations held about CAFOD and how we work, and our sensitivity and knowledge of local culture. We also took the chance to take part in CAFOD’s new campaign Power to Be and discussed how powerful (no pun intended) a little bit of energy can be in lifting people out of poverty.
Local MP, Jeremy Quinn, had a prior appointment but will be sent a briefing.
Our thanks go to the St John’s parish for hosting us and for those that came to raise their voice on behalf of those in poverty.
Jeremy Hunt with Year 6 pupils at St Edmund’s Primary
Many thanks to Jeremy Hunt MP for South West Surrey for taking time out of his busy schedule to visit St Edmund’s RC Primary in Godalming in this Speak up week of Action. The children in Year 6 wrote their thoughts about the Power To Be campaign on rays and three children spoke superbly about the need for the poorest communities to have access to electricity.
Presenting Power to Be to Jeremy Hunt
One child wrote “As children we all have a dream. For us if we work hard we can accomplish it . But for children in poorer places it is just a hope because they lack the thing we take for granted – electricity”. Another child wrote “291 million children don’t have electricity at their school which CAFOD are trying to solve.”
Jeremy Hunt talks to Year 6
Jeremy listened carefully to what the children had to say and he talked about his experience in Kenya when he visited a school that had solar panels which provided electricity so that the students could study in the evenings . He said ” The CAFOD Power To Be Campaign was brilliant”, and he acknowledge the work that CAFOD does overseas.
Chris Richardson, our fantastic school volunteer then led an assembly for the whole school on the Power to Be Campaign and shared how having electricity can change children lives so that they can achieve their dreams.
Jeremy Hunt addresses the school
I would especially like to thank Sue Hua the Year 6 teacher for her work with the children to enable them to participate in the Power to Be campaign and for organising the morning. Also many thanks to Elizabeth Higgins the head teacher of St Edmund’s for her support of the campaign and encouraging the children to get involved.
Thank you to Jeremy Hunt and Year 6.