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Local church eco discussion draws an international audience

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The event was staged by people from the churches in Cawston and Matlaske and their respective Deaneries, and it welcomed the Rt Revd Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich, as a guest speaker alongside Professor of Theology Richard Bauckham.

The event attracted around 90 participants from local churches, and from across the globe, with people joining in from Finland and Vancouver.

The purpose of the event was to draw attention to the church’s responsibility to be part of the wider environmental movement, and it touched on the practical ways in which churches can make a difference, such as the Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Churchyard Conservation Scheme and the national Eco Church movement.

The webinar was chaired by the Team Vicar from Cawston, the Revd Andrew Whitehead, who said:

“It was fantastic to have so many people join us for this debate, and our guest speakers were insightful and inspiring in the way they helped us through the issues. There was so much interest that we’ve made a recording of the webinar available on the Cawston Parish Church website ( and we’re already thinking about the next thing we might do!”

One of the guest speakers at the event was the Rt Revd Graham Usher, Bishop of Norwich, who added:

“I welcomed the opportunity to join many others online for a really interesting conversation about our responsibilities as Christians to care for the environment. Creation is a gift from God and humans are part of a whole web of interconnectedness. To live well on this planet, and to enable others to live well, means that we must face the alarm calls with urgency and do all we can to reduce our carbon footprint and protect biodiversity.”

Watch the webinar below:

The event came in the same week as the synod of the Diocese of Norwich overwhelmingly supported a motion declaring a biodiversity and climate emergency, and which sets out a route towards a greener church.