AT Green Christian’s Annual Members’ Meeting held in London on Saturday 11 November, Co-Chair George Dow and other board members reported on the year and led a discussion on finding hope.
Co-Chair Deborah Tomkins said: “This was an exceptional afternoon. After concluding the business of the AMM, we became engaged in a profound discussion about the meaning of hope in a world where hope seems almost lost. Green Christians brought a thoughtful Gospel response to some of the most difficult issues in our world today. We invite others to join us in this work.”
Trustee Paul Bodenham introduced the afternoon’s topic, “Where IS the hope?” with a brief discussion of aspects of hope: hope for a particular outcome; hope in a solution, person or technology; and hope beyond all these. Delegates discussed what hope means for them at this time of climate and ecological crisis. They also considered whether hope might be active rather than passive, what qualities are needed to render hope authentic, the types of questions hope might ask, and the qualities needed to ensure hope is grounded.
Thoughtful responses included: hope being motivated less by fear and more by love; working together with other groups, both Christian and non-Christian; a vision of the future, as in Isaiah; hope is the opposite of denial; we need to act hope into being. Delegates added that Green Christian helps by offering resources to share, workshops and courses, daily prayer guide, and uniting people with shared values.
Membership of Green Christian continues to grow. Zoom workshops on a variety of topics have proved very successful, and five ‘On The Road’ events were held in Saltburn, Edinburgh, Reading, York and Dronfield in the last year. Green Christian is also recruiting two new part-time posts for new projects: a church project officer and a food project officer. A new online course for church leaders in local churches starts in January, and a hybrid retreat is planned for September 2024.
Board member Paul Bodenham described the new eight session online zoom course Cloud and Fire, due to start on twice-monthly Tuesday evenings from 9 January 2024. It is designed especially for clergy, lay ministers and spiritual directors, giving a safe space to confront questions such as “What does my vocation mean in the shadow of catastrophe? What new pastoral responses do people need?”
Ruth Jarman, Green Christian Information Officer, described the activities of the Engagement Group including the online talks and workshops enabling people to learn and discuss new ideas.
The next two zoom workshops are:
- Wednesday 15 November 7pm: Faith and the Economy with Professor Steve McMullen, editor of the Magazine Faith and the Economy.
- Wednesday 6 December 7pm: Climate conversations with Christian psychologist John Steley on how people can hold two things together in their minds without making connections between them. With over 70 per cent of people in the UK recognising climate disruption is real, why do they still carry on with climate damaging behaviours?
* More about Cloud and Fire here.
* More information on the two part-time vacancies here.
* Source: Green Christian