Congratulations to St Paul’s United in Morden for responding to For the Love of Creation’s ecumenical call to hold vigils as the United Nations global climate conference wrapped up. Click here to read the full article and see photos of the event. Thank you to reporter Robyn Wiebe for such this coverage. A small taste:

“A small group gathered outside St Paul’s United Church in Morden to light a candle, read some poetry, sing a song, and hear a message of hope from Minister of the St Paul’s United Church in Morden and Darlingford and a representative of this newly formed group, yet to be named, Carrie Martens.

A lit taper candle shielded by an open hand.“The Christmas season is such a busy season and even folks who have a concern for the environment, a lot of the nostalgia and the tradition and just sheer consumerism that has developed over time in our country around Christmas, a lot of our commitments to the climate just fade away. Given that this is the weekend of COP 28, when they’re doing the UN conference discussing climate, we thought this was a really good opportunity to draw awareness to what’s happening in our environment and really to connect with each other…

“In the Morden area, the fact that we had the drought a couple of years ago was just a really big call to action, an awareness of how much has actually happened here. In Southern Manitoba, we get to be relatively distanced from a lot of their severe results of climate change. We are not one of the islands that’s actually sinking into the ocean, but we’re starting to see the severity here too, in our droughts, in wells drying up. That’s really concerning and that really does remind us there is a huge climate crisis happening.”

Local people have engaged with Morden city council, raising options for environmental action. “”People have expressed interest in things like: What about the single use plastics that we have in our community? What about the events that we hold? Could they be more environmentally friendly? What can we do as homeowners? What can we do with development in the Community and with continuing to nurture the environment and not just rip it down for development, but to work with people? One of the most significant things the group has talked about is, ‘How do we be in communication and work together with city councils?'”