|Dunedin Hills Ministry|
|St Mary's Mornington
||St John's Roslyn
Environment and Sustainability
In the creation story in the Book of Genesis, God looked at His work and "saw that it was good", several times, before Humans appeared on the scene. We believe that the whole universe, and particularly every living organism, is important to God and has worth and meaning. As Christians, we therefore have a special obligation to help protect our unique planet from our own excesses and neglect.
Environmental concerns are also rapidly becoming social justice concerns. Global warming and the associated rise in sea level and unpredictability in weather patterns are likely to have their first and greatest impact on those who are already poor and vulnerable. Hundreds of millions of people may face forced relocation or famine within only a few decades. Christians also have a responsibility to help others, and so we cannot ignore these issues.
A Sustainable Church
In association with the New Zealand Anglican Social Justice Commission, the parishes of St John's Roslyn and St Mary's Mornington intend to move towards a more sustainable way of operating. Initially, this means that the buildings and activities of the two churches will be assessed and, where possible, steps will be taken to reduce their impact on the environment. Eventually, the project's scope will be widened to include the lives of all interested parishioners.
Hopefully, our experience of what works and what doesn't will prove useful to other parishes embarking on a similar enterprise.
HELM - Hills Environmental Living Ministry
HELM is the name given to the study group set up by St John's and St Mary's to address environmental and sustainability issues. The group currently has about twenty highly enthusiastic members.
The first stage of the St John's/St Mary's sustainability programme was to conduct an environmental audit of both parishes. The audit will help us identify areas where we can reduce our impact on the environment, and also provide a baseline against which we can measure progress as we make improvements.
The audit tool takes the form of a questionnaire on topics such as energy use and waste management; some statistical data (such as electricity usage) are also recorded. Most of the audit tool is not specific to our parishes, so we are making it available on line for others to use if they wish. The file is in Microsoft Word format.
Click here to open the file. (To save a copy of the file, right-click on the link and choose "Save Target As . . ." or "Save Link Target As . . ." from the menu.)
St John's and St Mary's have initiated an award for Dunedin churches, to help encourage involvement in environmental projects. Any project, small (installing an energy-saving light bulb in a parish hall) or large (offsetting the carbon emissions of the entire South Island Christian community), is eligible to be considered. Churches will have a chance to win fame and glory (and the trophy), and their good ideas can be shared with a wider audience.
The Gardening Development Project
Dunedin Hills Ministry is running a project to help establish gardens and a compost bin for those who are struggling with their food budget. A follow-up programme is offered to assist with maintenance until participants feel they can manage alone. All the materials, plants and tools for the gardens are provided through various funding sources.
The participants help do the work to establish their own gardens, and are also encouraged to assist in establishing one other garden somewhere in the neighbourhood. In this way the project will aid community development as well as having a financial and environmental benefit.
The Gardening Development Project now has its own website; see the link in the blue box below.
For further information about any of the above, please contact the Parish Office.