“Climate justice is core to my faith but cycling to church is not just transportation; it’s meditation, the real beginning of my worship,”
- Christine Boyle, United Church Minister, Vancouver Chapter Organizer, and Director of Fossil Free Faith.
In June, over the duration of two weekends, Faith & the Common Good offered faith communities across Canada a challenge: leave the car behind when traveling to worship in favour of a “low carbon” mode...
The Reverend Clarence Li is an Anglican priest at St. Hilda’s by the Sea, in Sechelt (population 9,000) on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. He is participating in the Faith Commuter Challenge and Bike to Work Week by cycling and busing from his home to work at church and in the local community with the occasional trip by highway and ferry into the city of Vancouver. Here are Clarence’s reflections on his first week of reduced carbon commuting.
Anglican Bishop, Melissa Skelton. Photo Credit, Bayne Stanley
Vancouver’s Christ Church Cathedral has a new bell tower but the bells ringing in the 120 year old church last Monday were attached to the handle-bars of bicycles. With sacramental chrism oil, bicycle chain oil, holy water and prayers, Anglican Bishop Melissa Skelton, two Priests, and a United Church Minister blessed bicycles, transit passes, and a host of people who are making an effort to reduce the environmental impact of their commute to worship.
Did you know that transportation comprises 40% of an average faith community’s carbon footprint?1 Transportation is the second largest source of Canada’s GHG emissions.2 That’s why traveling green is one of the most important ways we can be stewards of our planet.
I’ve heard many environmentalists talk about how we are now living in a Post-Paris world, referring to the COP21 climate conference which was was billed as “the meeting to save the planet”. But of course the event that really shifted climate conversations in Canada wasn’t December’s Paris conference, it was October’s federal election.
The conversation around climate in Canada has shifted, but we’ve yet to see if the response will match the urgency that the science lays out. Which has left Fossil Free Faith asking,What is the role of Fossil Fuel Divestment in this post-election Canada?And, what else can we be doing?