Young Christian Climate Network’s relay to COP26

YCCN at Exeter Cathedral

We mourn the tragic loss of life and homes in European flooding last week. It brings home the urgent need for ‘climate justice’ for poorer countries especially, and for lifestyle changes from us all.

Ben Bradshaw, MP for Exeter, spoke at Exeter Cathedral recently as part of the Young Christian Climate Network’s relay from Cornwall to the COP26 conference in Glasgow.

So much progress has been made in the last 15 years, symbolised in today’s wonderful service: the liturgy that brings together a combination of repentance alongside the very sensible and practical 4 action points that the young people are demanding; in the Church of England’s own teaching and policy positions – incredibly welcome; and the work of the wonderful Melanesian Mission that has this connection with a part of the world already so affected by climate change…. Keep taking out that vital message, keep holding politicians and other decision makers to account, keep communicating the urgency of this to the wider community, we’ve still got a lot of work to do… I don’t think you could do anything as young Christian people more valuable.

Worshippers wrote prayers on Melanesian canoes (pictured), gathered by Canon Cate Edmonds.

Toby Grier and Jack Alderson, two young members of Exeter Network Church, spoke brilliantly at another YCCN event streamed from St Matt’s Church (pictured).

There’s a story of a man who was concerned by the injustice of the world, and exasperated, he cried out to God, ‘Why aren’t you doing anything?’ And God replied, ‘I did do something. I created you. The bible is very clear that we are called to the last, the least and the lost…”

(Toby, 17)

“Our relationship with Jesus gives us a calling for (climate) justice, and in that relationship it’s so much more sustainable to seek it”

(Jack, 20)

Katie Drew (Melanesian Mission), Prof Chris Southgate (University of Exeter), and Liz Dunbar (Christian Climate Action) also spoke powerfully. You can hear all their talks and a brilliant panel discussion hosted by Rev Hannah Alderson (Chaplain at University of Exeter). There are also more photos of Devon Relay events and pilgrimage walks.