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29 January 2015

Faith community must respond to climate change, says former Archbishop

Faith community must respond to climate change, says former Archbishop

A former Archbishop told a packed Elim church that the faith community must respond to climate change.

Dr Rowan Williams marked Bristol becoming the 2015 European Green Capital with a warning about the spiritual imperative to show responsibility to others and the planet.

As keynote speaker on the Climate Change: A Matter of Faith conference, Dr Williams said: "The world's poorest people –those communities who have done the least to cause climate change –bear the brunt of its impact. By being part of Bristol 2015 and taking steps towards a safer and cleaner future, we can stand shoulder-to-shoulder with people around the world. I was delighted to see the strong level of support for the day and the palpable sense of urgency amongst Christians from across the region."

The conference, which combined theological contexts with challenges, ideas, inspiration and resources, was organised by Christian Aid, CAFOD, South West Fairtrade and Alliance member Tearfund.

The former Archbishop added: "Bristol 2015 offers churches and faith communities in the city an opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to caring for people and planet."

A breakfast to start the conference saw representatives from Anglican, Baptist, Salvation Army, United Reformed Church and others sign a pledge to live more sustainably, pray for action on climate change and raise these issues at meetings of their governing bodies.

John Glass, general superintendent of Elim churches and Chair of the Evangelical Alliance Council, spoke about the importance of this work: "The God of creation has entrusted to us the stewardship of our planet. We have an obligation to live responsibly and purposefully by ensuring that the generations that follow enjoy pure and sustainable resources."