human development, social justice and sustainable social systems
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Fifteen years ago a friend and I started a campaign on climate change for churches in the United Kingdom. Britain had just experienced Make Poverty History, a campaign which had unleashed an amazing surge of global solidarity. Now with Operation Noah Britain’s churches would ‘make climate change history’ – or so we hoped.
On launch day I got my press release ready, clicked ‘Send’, and waited for the calls to flood in. The first response was not what I hoped. It came from the Campaign for Dark Skies (I had never heard of them!). They complained of our hypocrisy: how dare we claim moral leadership, when church floodlights throughout the land stopped the nation enjoying the stars!
I learnt an important lesson. Unless we ‘put our own house in order’ as a Church, we have no right to lecture others. Obvious, really.
In this article I’d like to share some of my own experience as an environmental campaigner, a Caritas leader, and drafter of a diocesan environmental policy – and invite you to join with me in exploring how the Church, and Caritas itself, should respond to Laudato Si’.
Read the full reflection above.
Programme Leader for Social Action
Diocese of Nottingham