ST MARY’S CHURCH in Hale has been recognized for its environmental practices and its fight against the climate crisis.
He received a Bronze Eco Church Award from A Rocha UK and aims to go gold next.
The Eco-Church program aims to equip churches and individuals to examine their impact on the environment and create a movement to help restore biodiversity at the local level.
St Mary’s Hale is one of six churches in the Avon Valley Churches team.
To secure the award, A Rocha UK asks the congregation to consider the environmental impact of the church and its activities. This involves looking at services, building and grounds management, community and global engagement, and personal lifestyle.
Bethan Davies, Eco Church Champion for St Mary’s Hale, said: “The Eco Church Award program brings together groups from across the community and channels concern for our planet into positive action.
I would especially like to thank our congregation for their continued dedication and the energies of our many partners, such as Woodgreen Community Shop, organizers of Hale Food Market, Hale House and Hampshire Fungus Recording Group. They all have a stake in this award. Then we go for the gold.
St Mary’s Hale offers eco-focused snowdrop services; reduced energy and water consumption at the church; conducted a wildlife survey; as well as holding a monthly Fairtrade stand in the local market.
During the lockdown, services went online and reusable cloth masks were sold to raise money for Ringwood Foodbank.
Every action, from weekly prayers to the Hale Angel Choir carpool program, the church says, shows consideration for the environment in all aspects of church life.
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