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Manchester hosts Green Christian day event

Green Christian held its sixth regional Green Christian On The Road Together event recently, a day conference at the URC Dandelion Community in Wythenshawe, Manchester.

Wythenshawe was designed as a garden city, and is the home of Manchester airport, but now has high numbers of vulnerable households experiencing food poverty.

Green Christian was invited by the minister of the Dandelion Community, Rev Kate Gray, and by Rev John Hughes, Diocesan Environment Officer (DEO) of Manchester Diocese, to join with them in celebrating creation and leading discussions on the Green Christian Way of Life, with its four Disciplines of Prayer/Devotions, Living Gently on the Earth, Public Witness, and Encouragement; and the Green Christian Joy in Enough programme, with its emphasis on social justice. The sessions were led by Deborah Tomkins and Tony Emerson.

Other activities included the making of a magnificent – and joyous – banner, to highlight the joy there is in having enough, rather than too much, with Manchester-based artist Stephen Raw; and an interactive session on non-violent direct action and Christian Climate Action with Hannah Malcolm, the winner of the first Theology Slam earlier this year.

Lunch was provided from food that would otherwise be thrown away, a delicious vegan dal and goulash prepared by Kate Gray and her team of helpers.

A more meditative session was held in which people made "prayer flags" writing on 20x20 squares of coloured material with their prayers, thoughts and feelings on the climate change / species extinction emergency.

Deborah Tomkins, Co-Chair of Green Christian said: "What a wonderful day, with thoughtful and committed Christians grappling with some difficult issues. I have found that each of the days so far has been very different, depending on the local communities and churches. It's always a privilege to be involved and to offer support and resources."

The next Green Christian "On the Road Day" is in Stroud, on 28 September.

The banner will be used at the event Churches & the Climate Emergency at the  Greater Manchester Churches Together Annual Assembly on 30 September at Salford Cathedral Centre (5pm). Some of the flags will be displayed at the Interfaith Event in London at the Global Climate Strike on 20 September.

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