Church in the World

From Wilma Wiens

On Sunday we heard from Scott Gerbrandt who is the director for A Rocha MB.
A Rocha is a Christian community bringing hope through care of people and place. In Winnipeg and the Boreal Ecology Centre they are gathering people together for hopeful environmental action. They are preserving sensitive habitats, threatened species, inspiring and training people of all ages.
Together we studied Scripture passages spanning the arc of the biblical story, that told of the intimate connection between God, humanity and the created world.
Significant were the stories of creation in Genesis 1 & 2 that tell of the goodness of all that God created and how everything existed in harmony with each other.
Also significant was the covenant God made after the flood, with all of creation:
“Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, ‘As for me, I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the domestic animals, and every animal of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark. I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.’”  Genesis 9:8-11
And the importance of creation to God:
“…all things have been created through him and for him (Christ). . . and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.”  Colossians 1:16, 20
We saw that embedded in the Christian story is the mandate to include creation care in our Christian witness.
We posed questions:
  • What difference will creation care make on the block where we live?
  • To what extent does this framing of environmental stewardship resonate with or help in reaching out to Christian groups who do not see the environment as a  religious issue?
  • How far-reaching is creation care?
  • It is so huge! What difference should/can I make?
  • What does creation care look like in a church setting?
  • How do we stop or reverse climate change?
We wondered how we, personally and communally, could become more involved in caring for creation:
  • Band trees
  • Community clean-up
  • Volunteer with and financially support organizations such as A Rocha
  • Care for our yards
  • Raise awareness about creation care; continue the conversation; attend Café A Rocha
  • Teaching, education about care of bodies, care of creation
We had 1-with-1, small group and large group conversations. We enjoyed food together.
We were grateful for the opportunity to begin a conversation in GBC about creation care.
To learn more about A Rocha check out their website at https://arocha.ca/
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