In anticipation of Easter and the celebration of new life in Christ, we celebrate the efforts of Canadian Christians during the season of Lent to live into the call to restore the life of the Earth.
Over the last six weeks, throughout the season of Lent, Christians across Canada have spoken up for climate justice. A faith-in-action campaign, Give it up for the Earth! supported Canadian Christians in raising awareness about climate change in their communities, and taking personal action as a demonstration of support for stronger and more urgent climate action from the federal government.
Over 90 churches and groups from the Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Christian Reformed, Lutheran, Mennonite, Presbyterian, and United churches, and several ecumenical networks took up the campaign in more than 55 towns and cities to distribute postcards to their members and communities. These postcards gave individuals the opportunity to make personal and community pledges to lifestyle changes for a healthier climate while letting Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, know that there are actions that the government must take in order to achieve climate justice.
Participants committed to CPJ’s suggestions to give up meat or driving, or to fly less frequently or divest from fossil fuel companies. But many also came up with incredible ideas of their own. Some engaged with governments on climate issues and taught others in their communities about climate change. Others committed to growing their own food, going zero-waste, and installing solar panels, to name a few. In making these commitments, Canadian Christians then asked the government to do their part to ensure Canada is working towards climate justice for all. Participants challenged the government to create climate policy that reflects Canada’s disproportionately high contribution to climate change, and to meaningfully addresses the impacts this change is having on people and the planet.
In communities in all 10 provinces and one territory organizers put on movie nights, hosted discussions on creation care, engaged youth groups, spoke in churches and schools, campaigned on the street, and more. The level of creativity and enthusiasm to engage people on climate issues all across the country reflects the commitment of Canadian Christians to live out the call to care for creation through word and action. Christians in Canada recognize the importance of climate action that spans all levels of society, from increased community education to stronger political action, and are using their voices and actions to express the need for a continued commitment from the government to do their part.
Easter is a time of celebration, and we certainly have reason to celebrate as Give it up for the Earth! comes to a close.
The passion and dedication of Canadian Christians who raised their voices for climate justice in Canada resulted in the distribution of upwards of 10,000 postcards during Lent 2017. As we celebrate the season of Easter, we also celebrate a renewal of the Earth through the actions of Canadian Christians for climate justice, from British Columbia, to Newfoundland, to Yukon.