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Viewpoint from Pat Stringer 05/11/2021

Dove rightPat Stringer
Licensed Lay Minister
Parish of Great Yarmouth

With the COP26 Conference in progress, there is much interest in the ‘Environment and Climate Change’.  The environment is particularly relevant in that it surrounds our lives, noise and quietness, crowds and solitude, home and work, built and natural.  Wherever we go, whatever we do, the environment has a profound effect on our lives.  We are asked to think of our world where climate change, international conflict and disasters are keenly sensed and communicated by the global community.  We also celebrate the beauty and power of the natural world, and the role of people in God’s creation
dove leftWhen God created Adam and Eve, he put them into the Garden of Eden with the responsibility of looking after it.  People have been creating gardens ever since.  We may not all have gardens, but as the descendants of Adam and Eve we all have a responsibility for the ‘big garden’ around us, the environment, but we have not always been very effective at caring for it.  God desires us to enjoy the beauty of creation, our gardens, allotments, window boxes, parks, wild flowers by the roadside, and woodlands all need planting, tending, and love.  We give thanks to God for the gift of his creation, a gift to be worked with as well as enjoyed.  A living thing to invest in as well as to treasure. If we are going to help global warming we need to plant more trees which absorb the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stores it, while releasing oxygen back out, let us give thanks to God for the glory of trees
The sky above is an environment mystery it is full of wonder.  God created the stars to give us light, to guide us as we seek out a path and a direction.  By following a star the magi were led to Jesus.  Looking up at the sky may articulate our sense of God ‘above us’ and ‘beyond us’.  The sky sums up the enormity of God, the vastness and hugeness of the universe, which fills us with awe.  God set a rainbow in the sky, its glorious colours transforming the environment and reflecting the promise of God the creator.  The rainbow was God’s sign of love and healing, it fills us with hope, joy and belief in the goodness of life; let us keep God’s promise to cherish the earth.

“All good gifts around us are sent from heaven above; then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord, for all his love”

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