Emily McIndoe, CAFOD volunteer and parishioner at St Peter’s Catholic Church in Lytham, writes about her parish’s involvement in CAFOD’s climate change campaign, Our Common Home, at Lytham Club Day on Saturday 22 June…..
The day went really well. We had a lot of positive reactions from bystanders to the fact that we were addressing the issue of climate change. It was quite heartening that several groups involved in Lytham Club Day addressed the issue, not just ourselves. In the weeks before Club Day, we invited parishioners to make pledges to do more to protect the environment, which we then made into a poster that is going to be put up in the Parish Hall. During the walk we gave out green heart stickers and we all had climate themed banners. The weather was wonderful and all the team were very enthusiastic throughout the route of the walk. St Peter’s Primary School were also involved with each class making a climate change themed banner, and they were all given ‘Zero Hero’ stickers.
I gave Mark Menzies, MP for Fylde, a green heart sticker which he put on. He was enthusiastic to meet with us and talk about the Lobby and climate change. Mark Menzies MP said, “As a Member of the International Development Select Committee, I have visited communities whose lives are being impacted as a result of climate change. I am determined to do all I can to ensure that issues such as the environment and climate change are acted on by the international community.”
St Peter’s parish have also written to Mark Menzies MP to ask his opinion on climate change using the three prompt questions given out to CAFOD campaigners for the lobby. The letter was signed by 17 people including Fr David Burns, Parish Priest. We also included green heart pledges from members of the parish and the children’s liturgy group to challenge themselves to take care of the environment. I spoke to Mark about this at the lobby as we’ve not had a parish response and he said he will get back to us and pledge to reduce his plastic waste.
Throughout June, I have been campaigning with members of St Peter’s Lytham and CAFOD Lancaster to raise awareness about climate change in Lytham, and to lobby our MP, Mark Menzies, to commit to making the UK a world leader in climate action. During both our meetings, Mark has been vocal of his support for climate action, which is incredibly encouraging. What we need now is for this to translate into real government policy and we hope that his stated support is reflected in his voting record on climate policies from now on.
Overall it was a great start to our parish’s participation in Our Common Home and will hopefully lead the way into the parish thinking more about climate change and how we can take action to be more environmentally friendly.