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Environment news from the Earthing Faith network and Diocese of Oxford
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It's wonderful to see the beauty of God's creation as Spring approaches and the days lengthen. It's also good to see a variety of exciting events and materials that focus on Christian care for creation. We've put some of the opportunities for March in the list below ... do let us know any others you're organising.

Loving God, Caring for Creation:
An Afternoon with Ruth Valerio



















On Saturday, 4 March, from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm, you are invited to join well-known author and speaker Ruth Valerio at an event which will launch our new 'Care for the Earth, Care for Each Other' course.

The event, held at Wesley Memorial Methodist Church in central Oxford, will feature a scrumptious tea and chance to meet other local Christians who are interested in creation care - as well as Ruth telling the story of how she came to see the Gospel as good news for the whole of creation. There will be plenty of time for questions and discussion - a relaxed way to share and to be inspired!

Register online for the 4th of March here

The 'Care for the Earth, Care for Each Other' course as a whole will have four sessions. Participants will explore with each other and outside speakers why we, as Christians, are called to care for the earth; how this fits within our spiritual traditions and the wider mission of our churches; how we can work with others in the community; and what practical actions we and our churches can take.

The sessions can stand alone, but the whole is designed to fit together, and we're hoping that churches will send an individual or team of individuals to the whole. The sessions will be:

4 March (Oxford): An Afternoon with Ruth Valerio
29 April (Oxford) or 6 May (Reading): Theology, Spirituality, and Our Churches' Mission
20 May (Oxford) or 3 June (Reading): Reaching Out: Working with the Wider Community
8 July (Oxford): What can our church do next? Practical Action and Forward Planning
 

Lent Materials for Reflection and Action


The Anglican Communion Environmental Network has prepared two extremely helpful resources for Lent 2017. The first is a 'Carbon Fast', which offers a calendar with suggestions for each day that can help us reflect on and reduce our use of energy and water. It will be used by individuals and churches around the Communion - people around the world working together for the good of our common home.


The second is a study guide with five meditations on 'The Water of Life' for the Sundays of Lent.  Written by ACEN members from around the Communion, the guide is available for individuals and groups as a PDF or as an app for smartphones and tablets. 

Every month Pray and Fast for the Climate offers prayer points and reflections for the 1st of the month - which in March will be Ash Wednesday. The prayer points will be available on the Pray and Fast website.

Caritas New Zealand has produced an excellent booklet of climate prayers for children and young people - useful in Lent or at any time.

Eco-Church has just celebrated its first anniversary - and as part of the celebrations, A Rocha has released a helpful set of worship resources. These include not only material for a 'Green Communion' but also an act of worship for an Eco-Church and a daily office service with a creation theme. Well worth a look.

Lent Talks


A number of church groups are putting together Lent talks that focus on care for creation and questions around an ethical lifestyle. These are open to anyone who wishes to come ... and a great opportunity to hear interesting speakers and to share in discussion with others.

Charlbury - 'Only One Earth'
(Tuesday evenings, 7 March to 4 April, 8:00 pm, St Mary's Church)


7 March - Connecting environment, science and Christianity
Reverend  Dr John Weaver will introduce the series, looking at the present environmental situation, Bilbical teaching on creation care, and practical steps for Christians and the Church.

14 March - Sustainable living
Maranda St John Nicolle will explore how we can live a good life within the finite resources of our planet

21 March - Justice and climate change
David Soward will talk about ecology, poverty and refugees, with reference to Christian Aid's campaign for human rights and climate justice.

28 March - Pope Francis and the environment
Professor Mary Grey will explore the implications of the Pope's 2015 encyclical 'Laudato Si' subtitled ;On care for our common home'

4 April - Eco Church
To complete the series, Martin Hodson from A Rocha will say how we should care for the environment.

Finchhampstead - 'Living Justly in the World'
(Tuesdays, 7 March to 4 April, 7:30 pm  - 9:00 pm, St James' Church Centre)


7 March - Use of Money
Rosemary Pearce, Diocesan Secretary for the Diocese of Oxford, explores the way we use our money.

14 March - Living Justly in a Changing Environment
Dave Bookless, Theology Director of A Rocha International, discusses approaches to more just lifestyles in the context of a world where the climate - and wider environment - is changing.

21 March - Towards an Ethical Approach to Buying Food
Glyn Evans and Maranda St John Nicolle, from the Diocese of Oxford, discuss ways of developing an ethic of food-buying.

28 March - Fair Trade
Chris Sugden and Derek Malin discuss what Fair Trade does and why and how Christians might support it.

4 April - Activisim from the Abolitionists to the Paris Climate Agreement
Siobhan Grimes, who works for Christian Aid, will explore a Christian grounding activism, with examples from past and present to challenge and inspire.

Wargrave  -  'Reflections on Creation' 
(Thursdays in March, 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm, St Mary's Church)

 
2 March -  Bible overview
Steve Turville & Mike Buckland will introduce the series and consider what the Bible says about God's creation and our part in it.  

 
9 March -  Food & Shopping
Rev Christine Bainbridge will consider the challenge of consumerism.

 
16 March - Energy
Dr David & Jane Fulford, of Kingdom Bioenergy and the Church Mission Society, will challenge our thinking about energy and how we use it.

 
23 March - Wildlife & How We Treat It
Mike Turton, a volunteer wildlife recorder, will help us think through our relationship with wildlife in the light of biblical teaching.

 
30 March - Travel & Transport
Dr Martin Hodson, environmental biologist at Oxford University, and his wife Margot, Rector of Wychert Vale and environmental theologian, will consider how we travel. 


All events held at St Mary’s Church, Mill Green, Station Road, Wargrave, RG10 8EU.  Please email wargravelentseries@gmail.com to help us cater, telling us how many you are if you are bringing a group.
 

Nature in the Balance Conference - 18 March


Can we put a value on the environment, and should we?
9.30am to 4.30pm at the Conference Suite, Bournville College, 1 Longbridge Lane, Longbridge, Birmingham, B31 2TW.
The price for the day including full lunch and refreshments is £48


Keynote speakers: 
Dr. Darren Evans  - “Ecosystem Services: managing nature for human benefit.”
Prof. Richard Bauckham  - “Why do other creatures matter?”
Rev. Dave Bookless  - “Biblical Wisdom for Nature Conservation.”
Plus a selection of seminars – more details on separate leaflet or at
http://www.jri.org.uk/nature-in-the-balance/
 

Sarx Creature Conference - 18 March



9.00-18.00 at the Oasis Auditorium, Oasis Auditorium Southbank, 75 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7HS
£65.00 including lunch
This event aims to equip and support Christians to engage theologically and practically with animal issues within the Christian life
Keynote Speakers
Dr Margaret Adam – Theologian, ethicist, author and former lecturer at Loyola University Maryland and the University of Glasgow. Currently Visiting Tutor at St Stephen’s House, University of Oxford.
The Rt Revd John Arnold – Roman Catholic Bishop of Salford, spokesman on the environment for the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales and Chair of the Trustees of CAFOD
Professor John Berkman - Lecturer in Moral Theology at Regis College, University of Toronto.  Previously professor at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, CA and at Duke University in Durham, NC.  
Dr Tony Campolo – Professor emeritus of sociology at Eastern University, Baptist minister, author, public speaker and former spiritual advisor to U.S. President Bill Clinton 
Professor David Clough – Professor of Theological Ethics, University of Chester, President of the Society for the Study of Christian Ethics, Founder of CreatureKind, and Methodist lay preacher
Dr Ruth Valerio – Churches and Theology Director for A Rocha UK, environmentalist, theologian, social activist and author on justice, environmental and lifestyle issues
The Rt Revd Dominic Walker – President of the Anglican Society for the Welfare of Animals, former Bishop of Monmouth and Honorary Vice President of the RSPCA.
 
http://sarx.org.uk/events/creature-conference/
 
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