Holy Cross Anglican Church Hackett

Following Jesus and building community in Canberra’s Inner North

Category: Environment

Creative festival connecting community, faith and sustainability

In a spirit of community building and healing, the faith communities of Holy Cross Anglican and St Margaret’s Uniting in Hackett in Canberra’s inner north recently hosted a festival focussed on sustainability.

Stall with seed packets and stallholder demonstrating seed sourcing
A stallholder shares the benefits of seed sourcing

The ‘Sustaining Our Future’ Festival on the weekend of September 19-20 brought together local groups and speakers to offer information on climate change and inspiration on how to reduce one’s individual or household waste and carbon footprint. 

“During these pandemic times, it’s even more important we find ways to get together safely and discuss common concerns, be inspired and make a difference,” said Reverend Chris Lockley of St Margaret’s.

People were able to test ride electric bikes and learn about composting. There was also a concert in the church featuring  singer-songwriter Lucy Sugerman and local youth bands, a visual arts exhibition, and an ecumenical ‘Celebration of Creation’ worship service.  

Dickson College students facilitate the ACT Candidates' Forum
Dickson College students facilitate the ACT Candidates’ Forum

The program included an ACT election candidates forum moderated by Dickson College students. 

“It was a great opportunity for our young people, who have a lot invested in a low-carbon future, to quiz local candidates about their sustainability policies ahead of the October poll,” said Reverend Tim Watson of Holy Cross.

This event, the first of its kind in Hackett, demonstrated the potential of the venue for more community events in the future where people can gather for spiritual and personal resourcing, community development, and to encourage each other in working for the Common Good.” 

The Festival was organised as part of Holy Cross/St Margaret’s joint Carbon Action Project, launched earlier this year. Both churches have committed to make their operations carbon neutral within two years, and to help church members and the local community take climate change seriously through local action and engagement.

The once-fixed pews in the ecumenical Hackett church were recently removed to allow for more dynamic and mixed uses of the interior worship space. 

Audiences enjoying the live music concert at the end of a great day

“The event was joyful and inclusive, and it put our mandate to evangelise as followers of Jesus into practice in so many different ways. It was a real celebration of beauty (art, music, God’s creation), truth (political debate, scientific and practical learning) and goodness (community, social and environmental action)”, said Reverend Watson.

“It also resonated with Bishop Mark’s encouraging comment about enabling people to return to church after lockdown: ‘re-integrating people to community through community, and helping us think about how we could implement similar steps with people who’ve never been part of our gathered worship’,” Rev. Watson added. 

The two ministers also thanked volunteers who worked hard to make it happen. 

“So many people made the event work. There were many hours served planning it and then during – to ensure it was safe and kept the festival moving along,” said Rev. Lockley.

Sustainability Festival on WIN News

The Sustaining Our Future festival made it to Canberra WIN TV news. Watch it here:

Sustaining Our Future North Canberra Sustainability Festival Sept 19-20 St Margaret's - Holy Cross

Sustainability festival to offer practical tips, question local ACT election candidates

MEDIA RELEASE 

Wednesday, 16 September 2020

Canberra’s inner north will this weekend host a Sustaining Our Future Festival that seeks to reduce our carbon footprint and build resilient communities.

The churches of Holy Cross Anglican and St Margaret’s Uniting in Hackett have put together an afternoon of talks, demonstrations and tips for action. 

“If you want to do something about climate change but aren’t sure where to start, the festival can help identify simple ways to reduce your carbon footprint, tell you how much CO2 you would save and inspire ideas for the future,” said Reverend Chris Lockley of St Margaret’s.

“During these pandemic times, it’s even more important we find ways to get together safely and discuss common concerns and to ways to make a difference.”

The program includes an ACT election candidates forum moderated by college students. 

“We think it’s great and appropriate that our young people, who have a lot invested in a low-carbon future, will have this opportunity to quiz local candidates about their sustainability policy ahead of the October poll,” said Reverend Tim Watson of Holy Cross.

Also speaking will be Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment, Jamie Isbister.

The full program is as follows:

Saturday 19 September

  • 12.00 noon – 12.20 pm  Welcome to Country by Aunty Vi Sheridan
  • 12.25 – 1.00 pm Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment and head climate negotiator, Jamie Isbister in conversation with author, Toni Hassan
  • 1.05 pm – 1.35 pm Brook Clinton from Capital Scraps Composting on “The science of composting”
  • 1.40 pm – 2.00 pm Holy Cross/St Margaret’s Carbon Action Project talk
  • 2.05 pm – 2.45 pm Mia Swainson from Zero Waste on “How to halve your household waste”
  • 3- 4 pm  ACT Candidates’ Forum run by students from Dickson College, with Kurrajong candidates including Elizabeth Lee and Shane Rattenbury. To book https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=659164
  • 4.30 – 6 pm Free concert with Lucy Sugerman (The Voice / National Folk Festival Youth Ambassador 2020) plus local bands including Northbourne Flats and Pig Dog  To book: https://www.trybooking.com/654789    
  • All afternoon – stalls by Society, Environment and Economy (SEE) Change, Canberra Seed Savers, Switched on cycling, ENJO & Women’s Climate Congress, photography on display, art for kids and food/coffee cart    

Sunday 20 September

* 9.30am Ecumenical “Celebration of Creation” outdoor worship service

“Sustaining Our Future” Festival – Full Programme

CLICK HERE FOR THE ZOOM LINK FOR THE SATURDAY PROGRAMME.

On 19-20 September, Holy Cross Anglican Church and St Margaret’s Uniting Church, Hackett, are running a community sustainability festival, as part of our joint churches Carbon Action Project. This is a COVIDSafe event, and is open to all.

Saturday

  • 12.00 noon to 12.20 pm. Welcome to Country by Aunty Vi Sheridan
  • 12.25 to 1.00 pm. Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment and head climate negotiator, Jamie Isbister in conversation with local writer and journalist, Toni Hassan
  • 1.05 pm to 1.35 pm. Brook Clinton from Capital Scraps Composting on “The science of composting”
  • 1.40 pm to 2.00 pm. Holy Cross/St Margaret’s Carbon Action Project talk
  • 2.05 pm to 2.45 pm. Mia Swainson from Zero Waste on “How to halve your household waste”
  • 3pm to 4pm. ACT Candidates’ Forum run by students from Dickson College, with candidates for Kurrajong, including Elizabeth Lee and Shane Rattenbury. To book for this event please go to: https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=659164
  • Stalls by Society, Environment and Economy (SEE) Change, Canberra Seed Savers, Switched on cycling, ENJO & Women’s Climate Congress.
  • Pedal-powered glass snail by www.kineticsculptures.org
  • 12 noon to 4 pm. Photography exhibition with photos from lockdown
  • 4.30 pm to 6 pm. Concert with Lucy Sugerman (The Voice / National Folk Festival Youth Ambassador 2020) and local bands including Northbourne Flats and Pig Dog. To book for this free concert go to: https://www.trybooking.com/654789

Sunday

  • 9.30am: Ecumenical Creation Service outdoors under our flowering cherry tree


Carbon Action Project at Home

To help reduce energy usage and save money around the home the Holy Cross and St Margaret’s Carbon Action Project team have produced an information package entitled ‘Energy Smart Actions.’ It includes:

  • a list of tips for saving energy
  • the link for using the on-line Australian Greenhouse Calculator (for those wanting a closer look at their cartoon footprint); and
  • a Data Sheet to make a carbon action plan and record results.

Our hope is to support and inspire households in North Canberra to reduce our emissions and go carbon-neutral. Please use these resources and let us know how you go.

Poem: “After the Ascension”

No one wanted to look at each other.
No one wanted to speak, to be the first

to speak…

Carrie Fountain

Holy Cross and St Margaret’s have recently moved to a weekly “Eco-Minute” in our Sunday worship, to ensure that we pray regularly for our Carbon Action Project, which forms part of our wider commitment to God’s mission in the world.

On 24 May, Ascension Sunday, our “Eco-Minute” was a poem by Carrie Fountain, published in the online journal ECOTHEOREVIEW. You can read it here:
http://www.ecotheo.org/after-the-ascension/

Launch of Carbon Action Project

West face of Holy Cross Anglican Church in morning light

Holy Cross and St Margaret’s are embarking on a Carbon Action Project, which we are launching on Sunday 1 March:
9.30am Joint Service – 1st Sunday of Lent;
11am Launch of Carbon Action Project

This is a very significant initiative in the life of both our churches, enabling us all to practice what we preach as stewards of God’s good creation.

See our Carbon Action Project page for more information.

Creation Sunday and climate change

A post from a young parishioner:

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.

Creation Sunday at Holy Cross and St Margaret’s

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