Chichester Cathedral is joining the nationwide call for all churches and cathedrals to ring their bells on the eve of the United Nations Climate Conference in Glasgow.
The Ring Out For Climate Change campaign is being led by Edward Gildea, a Christian Aid climate campaign organiser from Essex who is asking churches to ring their bells from 6.00pm onwards, on Saturday 30th October, as a warning of the climate emergency and to mark the start of the conference.
As we host Luke Jerram’s Museum of the Moon at Chichester Cathedral, we are reminded of how important it is that we care for our planet. Just as the Moon's gravitational pull creates the tides of the oceans, it also generates more moisture in the soil, encouraging plant growth. As moonlight increases - going from New Moon to Full Moon- it stimulates leaf growth, and in turn flowers move and grow. We must all play our part in protecting our delicate and beautiful environment.”
The Dean of Chichester, the Very Reverend Stephen Waine
The UN Climate Conference, CoP26, will see 196 world leaders and an expected 20,000 delegates meet in Glasgow and work together to commit to a reduction in emissions to avoid a climate emergency. It comes just months after the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change described global warming as a "code red for humanity".
The bell ringing campaign has already been endorsed by the Bishop of Norwich, the Right Reverend Graham Usher, the Church of England’s lead Bishop on the environment, who will join the delegation in Glasgow. He said:
“Church bells have traditionally been rung through the centuries to raise the alarm for local communities. The recent “code red” report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is an alarm call for us all.
I am happy to endorse a nationwide “ring out for climate change” on the eve of the COP26 as a symbol of warning, but also of hope, that this conference will lead to action for us all, like Jesus, to tread more gently on our single island planet home and care more for those already adversely affected by climate change, especially in the economically poorest places on earth”.
How you and your church can get involved
Within the Diocese of Chichester, the Bishops of Lewes and Horsham are leading a call to prayer, which will include interceding specifically for the aims of the COP26 meeting in Glasgow.
The prayer gatherings will be at dawn and at dusk on the first day of the COP, Sunday 31st October.
The Bishop of Horsham, Ruth Bushyager is leading a prayer gathering with Horsham Churches Together. Everyone is welcome for Bible readings, silence & prayer, 7.30am at Horsham Park (Human Nature Garden). Find out more here >>
The Bishop of Lewes, Will Hazlewood, is taking part in a Celebration of the Beauty of Creation at Firle Beacon also on Sunday but at 4.00pm . This will be followed by a walk to St Peter’s, Firle for an act of commitment at 6pm to maintain the integrity of creation and to pray for all those charged with making difficult decisions at COP26. All will be very welcome to join for any part of it. Find out more here >>
Here are some prayer points that will help churches and individuals seek God for COP26 over the coming couple of weeks :
- Pray that the UK government will lead by example and show clearly how we will achieve our own targets for climate action and achieving net zero.
- Pray for justice and fairness to be at the heart of the decisions that are made.
- Pray that representatives from developing countries will not be limited from attending due to COVID19.
- Pray for Government Ministers and others leading the conference.
- Pray for the voices of young people to be heard in every aspect of the conference.