On Sunday at church we talked about how God is behind creation and all living things. Rachel did an amazing talk on how our beautiful planet is heating up, increasing the number of species of animals that are extinct, and how we can learn from Aboriginal people to care for the earth. It got us all thinking. Will we have a planet to live on in a decade or two?
Will my children be able to survive in such an environment? How can we save what God has given us before it’s too late?
I myself have been thinking about these things already but this got me thinking deeper, because if governments are not going to do anything then it’s up to us too.
Global warming is a BIG problem! We need to start acting. There are little things to do to make a difference to stop our planet heating up more:
We can eat less meat. Even though meat is good for you (in most cases) it is adding to the pollution of our environment. I am a flexitarian which means I eat meat only sometimes. When I am older I want to be a full vegetarian, but for now, as I am growing, I need protein. Livestock farming is crashing our environment because cows and other non-native animals are contributing to severe drought which at this rate we’ll see a lot more of across the world!
We can walk places. I walk home from school about three day a week. I’m not perfect because I do get dropped off places quite a lot, but I’m trying to improve every day. Walking or bike riding helps the environment because when you use a car that uses fossil fuel petrol it adds to pollution in the air and global warming. It adds to the invisible bubble surrounding the earth. This bubble lets heat in but DOESN’T easily let it back out again. Electric cars are better.
When I’m older I’m 110% going to own an electric car. My family has a hybrid car which is pretty good. If we want to get out of this climate mess than we should have an electric (or solar) car (if we are going to have a car at all) or take public transport!
On that morning of Creation Sunday, we made craft using natural materials to celebrate nature and we wrote a letter to Prime Minister Scott Morrison letting him know that he is not doing enough about climate change and that it’s NOT ok. Whether he listens or not is up to him but honestly I think that deep down everyone, including him, is scared. We all just have different ways of showing it. But if are going to get out of this mess we all need to decide to stand up, fight back for the planet and not let climate change ruin something that was never ours alone to ruin.
Labyrinths are an ancient spiritual practice: for many thousands of years, people of all faiths and none have used them for prayer and meditation. In the Middle Ages Christians embraced them as a form of pilgrimage: the most famous one is in Chartres Cathedral, France. A labyrinth is not a maze: you can’t get lost! There’s just one route to follow which always leads to the centre.
The Trinity Labyrinth is unusual in having three centres: the heart, representing the Father; the cross, representing the incarnate Son, Jesus Christ; and the dove, representing the life-giving Holy Spirit. The path that links the centres represents the “divine dance” of love between Father, Son and Spirit, in which we are invited to join. The theological word for this is perichoresis, from the Greek peri-khorein (which also gives us “chorus” & “choreography”).
Unlike some labyrinths which take you on a long journey before reaching the centre, when you enter the Trinity Labyrinth you are welcomed at once to the Father’s heart, and then invited on a pilgrimage into the heart of the love of God.
Before you enter the labyrinth, you might want to reflect on a line of Scripture, hold a memory of a loved on you wish to pray for, or consider an experience from your life where you are seeking healing or forgiveness.
As you walk the path, moving slowly at your own pace and pausing at the centres, you are invited to experience the love of God who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit, who creates, redeems and sustains you at every moment.
When you return to the heart, you can either leave the labyrinth, or – if you have time – choose to continue on your pilgrimage (you might like to walk it three times). There is no right or wrong way to walk a labyrinth.
When you leave, take a moment to thank God for what you have received.
Parishioner Toni Hassan, a director with charity Stop the Traffik Australia, traveled to Cambodia and Thailand earlier this year to see, touch, engage, laugh and cry with people impacted by modern slavery and those working to end human trafficking. She shared her high and lows with friends at an open-house event on the weekend.
Modern slavery is the fastest growing trade, the trade of people for exploitation, after illicit drugs. There are an estimated 40 million people in modern slavery, more people than at any time in human history. Poverty, poor governance, internal conflict and corruption are the perfect cocktail for modern slavery to thrive in, with women and children the worst impacted.
People often think modern slavery involves sex trafficking. Sex trafficking represents about a third of modern slavery cases. The majority involve forced labour in the high risk sectors including clothing manufacturing and seafood. Modern slavery exists in the supply chains of many of the goods we use and consume.
There is good news. There are businesses and not-for-profits, secular and faith-based organisations working to prevent modern slavery, as well as a growing awareness among governments in the developed and developing world about the risks and how to mitigate them. Australia has adopted a Modern Slavery Act.
Toni showcased the life-changing work of these businesses and advocates:
We acknowledge the triune God, the Creator of heaven and earth and His ownership of all things (Psalm 24:1).
We recognise that He gave stewardship of these lands upon which we meet to the First Nations Peoples of this country (Acts 17:26). In His sovereignty, He has allowed other groups to migrate to these shores.
We acknowledge the cultures of our First Nations Peoples and are thankful for the community that we share together now.
We pay our respects to the traditional custodians of this land and their elders, both past and present, and those who are rising up to become leaders.
— Rev Neville Naden
Holy Cross Anglican Parish
Corner Antill St & Phillip Ave
(enter from Antill Street)
Tel: 0490 336 409
PO Box 164
Dickson ACT 2602, Australia