The European Christian Environmental Network has published a statement agreed at the recent Third European Ecumenical Assembly held in Romania. It calls on Christians to take serious and sustained action to combat the ecological crisis threatening the world.
ECEN played a prominent role in shaping the environmental dimension of the Assembly including the eco-management and climate change compensation scheme, as well in preparing a 'Creation Forum'.
The Forum, focussing on the challenges to the earth's delicate ecosystems and the question of religious responsibility, was well attended and offered a space for a substantial plenary contributions as well as open discussion.
The full European Christian Environmental Network statement to the continent's Protestant, Catholic, Orthodox and Anglican churches is as follows::
"Global climate change is one of the greatest threats for the present and for future generations. Without a change of mind and heart, technological solutions or political negotiations to protect the climate will not achieve their goals.
"The churches should therefore give priority to the cause of responsible and sustainable life styles. The specific contribution of the churches to the environmental movement is a better understanding of our interconnectedness with all of creation. Today a simple lifestyle is an important Christian witness. The Christians and churches in Europe are called to use the Creation time (from 1st September to St Francis day) to pray and act in response to this ecological crisis which already affects the lives of millions of people and the whole creation.
"We commit ourselves to strengthen our current networks like ECEN in order to equip Christians for practical and political action ensuring that the earth’s capacity rather than economic development takes priority.
"We call churches to provide guiding examples that will inspire and encourage their members and the wider community to practice excellence in eco-management and substantially reduce their carbon footprint."