Hathersage Methodist Church in the Peak Circuit is the 10th church to be granted an Eco-Church Award in the Sheffield District.
Hathersage received their award in June after acting to reduce their environmental impact including the creation of a woodland garden in the church grounds which is a haven for wildlife and a community garden for the village. Over the last year all lights have also been replaced in the church with energy efficient LED bulbs, a Repair Café has been established to help repair and up-cycle broken or worn out items and special services have been held to celebrate creation and how to care for it.
Dave Fisher, a member of the Steering Group, said: "As a church we've been taking action over many years to reduce our environmental impact and cherish God's creation, without consciously thinking about the Eco-Church scheme, but over the last year we have become more focussed recognising that we are in a climate crisis and feeling God's call for us to do more to slow global warming. We took the decision to formally work towards the Eco-Church standard in February 2022, with the support from the Leadership Team and a vote at the Church Council. We set up at steering group of three people who gathered the facts and went through the Eco-Church assessment questionnaire. We found the process quite straightforward and we are encouraged to have reached the Bronze level already. We see this as an early step on our Eco-Church journey and there is a lot more we want to do over the coming months and years."
Eco-Church is a scheme designed to motivate and equip churches to express care for God's world in worship and teaching, management of church buildings and land, community and global engagement and in the lifestyles of the congregation.
There are now churches in most circuits in the Sheffield District who have either been awarded a bronze or silver Eco-Church award or are registered with the scheme and are awaiting their awards.
Tom Rattigan, Missional Property Enabler, said: "I'm encouraging all churches to explore the Eco-Church scheme and by taking some small sustainable steps we can all play our part in a much bigger picture. We are in a climate crisis, which makes care for creation an essential part of being fit for mission. Eco-Church offer lots of resources to help you explore further and your District team are ready to support you."
To find out more about the scheme visit https://ecochurch.arocha.org.uk/ and if you'd like to apply or make changes to your buildings to support this scheme please contact Mission Property Enabler Tom Rattigan at firstname.lastname@example.org