Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Anglican Communion Stories About Climate Change

The Anglican Communion News Service (ACNS), a sometimes-updated online service of Lambeth Palace, has had two interesting stories about Christian involvement in climate change issues this month. The first, dated October 12, was titled simply, "A Statement from the Anglican Communion Environmental Network," and the second, from October 14, was called, "Act local as well as national urges Archbishop of Canterbury."

An excerpt from the Environmental Network statement:

We look to the Copenhagen conference with hope but also with realism... there must be a desire on the part of every nation to do what they know they must, not because they are legally bound, but because they share a vision for a more just and sustainable future... We pray that each nation will come to the conference wanting the highest level outcome; that demanding targets will be set, not in an attempt to discipline reluctant participants, or to give some preferential treatment which undermines the whole; but that a greater vision might be shared...

Our faith and our ancestors have always taught us that the earth is our mother and deserves respect; we know that this respect has not been given. We know that like a mother the earth will continue to give its all to us. However, we also know that we are now demanding more than it is able to provide. Science confirms what we already know, our human footprint is changing the face of the earth and because we come from the earth, it is changing us too.

And an excerpt from the story about the Most Rev. Williams:

In a lecture today at Southwark Cathedral (sponsored by the Christian environmental group Operation Noah) Dr Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury, sets out a Christian vision of how people can respond to the looming environmental crisis. Beginning with the story of Noah and the Flood, Dr Williams highlights the “burden of responsibility for what confronts us here and now as a serious crisis and challenge”. Our relationship with the rest of creation is intimately bound up with our relationship with God. The Bible offers “an ethical perspective based on reverence for the whole of life”. “To act so as to protect the future of the non-human world is both to accept a God-given responsibility and, appropriately, to honour the special dignity given to humanity itself.”

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