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Have a happy ecological advent 2018

November 26, 2018:

For Christians Christmas is the annual commemoration of the birth of a child, the Messiah, in Palestine. The four weeks leading up to it are traditionally a time of penitence and anticipation known as Advent (which means 'the coming'). And the feast of Christmas is traditionally a time of celebrating all Creation.

It's also become a time of celebrating consumer consumption, with the Christian story increasingly lost in a whirl of shopping, eating and drinking.

This wastefulness of the planet's resources is doubly challenging for those Christians concerned about the way humanity takes care of creation. But it doesn't have to be that way.

Green advent resources

Here are some useful resources that can help Christians, congregations and preachers reclaim the spirit and purpose of Advent and, indeed, make it a time for mindfulness about the need to use this world's bounty with wisdom.

Advent and Ecology liturgy
ARC devised this Advent Creation Liturgy for use in a service at St George's Chapel, Windsor and many congregations have since been able to use all or part of it as part of their own Advent worship.

HRH Prince Philip's environmental sermon for Advent
In 1988, not long after the famous Assisi Declarations, the founder of ARC, His Royal Highness, Prince Philip gave an important sermon at St George's Chapel, Windsor, with the inspiring theme: "Christians need to use the annual celebration of the birth of our Lord as an inspiration to become better and more considerate guardians of His Creation, so that its beauties and wonder, whether they are practically useful to us or not, can continue to praise Him."

A vegetarian Christmas pie

Have a Greener Christmas

Choose food that is kind, as well as celebratory Is your Christmas meal the kindest you can, with your resources, make it?
  • Could it be more organic?
  • More free range?
  • More vegetarian?
  • More locally sourced?
  • Could your gifts be chosen to support small, ecological businesses?
  • Could you reduce the number of deliveries?

Eco Friendlier food ideas for Christmas. Reclaim Christmas!
A rousing campaign from Operation Noah, a Christian action group focused on climate change, urging 'Prophets not Profits!' There's a helpful page about how to reclaim Christmas in your community, including links to special hymns and prayers and a child-friendly script for a play that young people could perform appropriately titled 'A Present for the Future'

Green Advent 'pointers' for preachers from 2013
The Christian Ecology website has a week by week calendar based on the common worship lectionary and using the set texts as the basis for environmentally-focused contemplation.

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Related pages

November 27, 2018:
Prince Philip's environmental Sermon for Advent
This Advent Sermon by the Duke of Edinburgh was first given at St George’s Chapel, Windsor in 1988. His observations are even more relevant today. "Christians need to use the annual celebration of the birth of our Lord as an inspiration to become better and more considerate guardians of His Creation."
Interview with Prince Philip
“If you believe in God, which is what Christians are supposed to do, then you should feel a responsibility to care for His Creation.” ARC's founder, the Duke of Edinburgh gives a rare interview about his beliefs in conservation.
Advent and Environment Liturgy
Will you celebrate God's full Creation at Advent time? This service designed for St George's Chapel in Windsor can be adapted for any church at advent.