Evangelicals mobilising church for creation care

Evangelicals from around the world came together in Jamaica recently to hash out a shared vision for creation care.

The consultation was hosted jointly by the World Evangelical Alliance and the Lausanne Movement.

Sixty delegates from 23 countries spent five days working out the role of the church in caring for the environment.

Conclusions from the meeting will provide the inspiration for a soon-to-be-released 'Call to Action'.

The two organisations are also putting together resources to contribute towards "the development of a global movement for caring for creation through local churches".

Dr Chris Elisara, Executive Director of WEA's Creation Care Task Force, said: "Whenever God's people come together prayerfully, humbly, and focused on seeking first God's Kingdom, wonderful things can happen.

"That occurred at this global consultation where the outcomes, I believe, will have a huge and positive impact not only on global mission and evangelicalism, but ultimately, on the whole of creation."

Dr Thomas Schirrmacher, Chair of the WEA Theological Commission, issued a strong plea to Christians in the Global South "to lead the Church on the issue of creation care", because they are being impacted the most by the negative effects of pollution, ecological degradation, and climate instability.

The WEA and Lausanne plan to issue a report in three months' time and a book next year with papers and reflections from the consultation.

Dr Elisara added: "While the Micah gathering and its outcomes focused on creation care and climate change, this year's second global gathering focused on the relationship between God's mission, the gospel, and creation care.

"By combining their foci, evangelicals who are seeking understanding and guidance on creation care are well served by these two documents."

The Reverend Edward R Brown, Lausanne's Senior Associate for Creation Care, said there were now plans for regional consultations on creation care in south-east Asia, east Africa and North America.

He said the Call to Action was being issued because "we believe that the environmental crisis is one that must be resolved in our generation".