In this coming month of November, 2021, we seem to be reaching a time of very great significance for both the Church and the World. On Sunday the United Nations Climate Conference begins in Glasgow – COP26 – while the universal Catholic Church embarks on a Synodal Pathway, a consultation and listening exercise to which everyone is invited.
Download the November E-Bulletin to find details of some of the many events and activities taking place and how you can participate. We hope you will find something there of interest to you…
The E-Bulletin for October is ready for download. Please check out all the exciting and worthwhile events happening in the coming months, many more of which are now happening in person.
We would particularly like to invite people to participate in the gathering to welcome Little Amal to Westminster Cathedral (on Monday 25th October, 2-3pm) where we will be praying for all refugees, especially unaccompanied children who are making their way towards this country.
There is also a Candle-lit Procession (Monday 1st November, 6pm) and Day of Global Action Climate Rally (6th November, 11am), both during COP26, where we have one last chance to influence our politicians and business leaders during this important decision-making moment for the future of our planet.
See the newsletter for all the details about these events and many more ways to contribute to peace and justice activity in the Diocese.
Please write to Colette Joyce at email@example.com if there are any events you would like included in future E-Bulletins.
Welcome to the Season of Creation!
Amidst all our current difficulties and the challenges that face us at the start of this new academic year, we hope you will be able to take some time to celebrate and enjoy the wonderous gift to us that is God’s creation – our planet, all its treasures, plants, animals, each other and life itself…
This month’s newsletter includes links to resources and events that we hope will be helpful during this Season, as well as the usual Diary Dates for many other justice activities in the coming term.
Summer of Climate Justice Part 2:
1) The Diocese of Westminster has published a commitment to do its utmost to become carbon neutral by 2030 in its parishes and curial buildings. It has also expressed its commitment to working with schools to encourage them to follow the same path.
The Diocesan plan focuses on 4 pillars:
i) Clean Energy Sources – purchasing gas and electricity from green suppliers.
ii) Investment Policy – promoting a path to decarbonisation.
iii) Reducing Carbon Emissions – from energy usage in parishes and diocesan buildings.
iv) Generating Clean Energy.
The announcement, made on 26th July 2021, is accompanied by more detail on the website here:
and a short, six-minute video from Cardinal Vincent encouraging every parish, school and household to play their part:
2) We welcome the Young Christian Climate Network (YCCN) Relay to Westminster Cathedral on Friday 6th August 2021 for a Climate Prayer Service at 3.30pm.
The service is preceded by lunch and a blessing at Farm Street Church, Mayfair, at 1pm, followed by a walk to Westminster Cathedral as part of the Relay. The route will take us through Berkeley Square, Green Park, St James Park and past Buckingham Place as a witness to climate justice and a call for action to our political and business leaders ahead of the G7 in Glasgow in November. All welcome to join us and show your support. Sign up with Eventbrite to help us know numbers in advance:
Friday 6 August, 1.00-3.30pm: YCCN Climate Relay Lunch at Farm Street and Walk to Westminster Cathedral
Book at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/163375276851
Friday 6 August, 3.30-4.00pm: Ecumenical Climate Prayer Service at Westminster Cathedral Welcoming the YCCN Relay
Book at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/163372454409
3) 200 activists gathered at the Annual Justice & Peace Conference at the Hayes in Swanwick, Derbyshire, for discussion and reflection on the theme ‘Moment of Truth: Action for Life on Earth.’ A strong contingent of around 20 participants took part from the Diocese of Westminster. Read the reports here: https://westminsterjusticeandpeace.org/2021/07/26/njpn-conference-report-taking-action-for-life-on-earth/
4) The Global Catholic Climate Movement has changed its name to: Laudato Si’ Movement
“[The] name now is not a corporate label; it is a prayer… When we name the movement now, every time we name it we’re saying a prayer. Laudato Si’, praise be the Creator.”
– Cardinal Michael Czerny, Under-secretary of the Section for Migrants of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.
Read about Three Actions for the Summer of Climate Justice:
1) As part of CAFOD’s G7 Youth Delegation, Caitlin Boyle, Caritas Westminster’s Information Officer, spent the weekend 11-13 June in Cornwall.
Caitlin writes: For as long as I can remember, I have been interested in campaigning for social justice, a key factor in why I wanted to work for Caritas Westminster, the social action agency of the Diocese of Westminster. We arrived in Cornwall on Thursday evening, and hosted an interfaith service at Truro Cathedral … read full article on the Caritas website
2) The Young Christian Climate Network (YCCN) is an action-focused community of young Christians in the UK aged 18-30, from different denominations, choosing to follow Jesus in the pursuit of climate justice. The YCCN has organised a 1,000+ mile relay pilgrimage from Carbis Bay in Cornwall, where the G7 summit took place, up to Glasgow, where COP26 will be meeting in November. The walkers want to see systematic change on a global and a local scale.
Molly Clarke, who walked the first day, said: “Our Relay is about rising to the moment. This year, with COP26 happening on our doorstep, is an opportunity like no other to call for change. Taking part in our pilgrimage was the most wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I urge everyone to get involved…” read full article on Independent Catholic News website
3) Care of Creation Briefings take place online 1.00-1.45pm every Monday and will continue in the lead-up to the UN Climate Conference COP26 in Glasgow, 1-12 November 2021.
Colette Joyce and Nali Nathan report: Passionate social justice activists from across London and the South-East of England have been coming together on Zoom every Monday lunchtime in 2021 to pray, share ideas, and take unified action for Climate Justice. They discuss all aspects of Care of Creation including preventing habitat loss, protecting biodiversity, eliminating waste, promoting sustainable development, global racial justice, Live Simply Parishes, Journey to 2030, communicating with clergy, parishioners and bishops, and building ecumenical and interfaith partnerships. The Monday Briefings bring together Catholics from five dioceses – Arundel & Brighton, Brentwood, Portsmouth, Southwark and Westminster… read full report on the Westminster Justice & Peace Commission website
As we approach a second summer since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, our thoughts are turning frequently to the kind of world into which we will emerge. Among the many opportunities for deeper reflection and action listed in the Diary Dates of the E-Bulletin, you will also find an invitation to attend the next Westminster Social Justice and Peace Forum for sharing and discussion on the world of work.
Bishop Nicholas Hudson writes:
‘“Life to the full” is the message and aspiration of this Easter time. Human flourishing is at the heart of the Catholic Vision of Work… We seek, in the next Social Justice & Peace Forum, to hold this Catholic Vision of Work in dialogue with our own experience of how work looks to have been altered by these last fourteen months of Pandemic, how we anticipate it looking in the future… ‘
This month’s E-Bulletin includes details of the next Westminster Social Justice and Peace Forum on Saturday 22nd May, which will focus on issues of work and unemployment facing us as we begin to emerge, we hope, from pandemic and lockdown. It is especially apt that we contemplate a Catholic Vision of Work during this year dedicated to St Joseph, patron saint of workers.
We wish you a peaceful and blessed Easter-tide.