Church and Earth
In February 2016 the PCC held a preliminary discussion about EcoChurch. The launch of Eco Church was examined in this podcast from Share Radio - which at 20m15s contains an interview with our own PCC eco-advocate Deborah Colvin. St James's is working towards reducing its energy consumption and towards raising awareness of the steps we can all take to lessen the harm our hunger for energy does to the planet. See our eco-library and eco-blog for more. You can email Deborah here.
In October 2018 St James's was delighted to receive an Eco Church Gold Award. We are only the fourth recipient in the country of a gold Eco Church Award
Andy Atkins, the CEO of A Rocha UK, a Christian conservation charity, presented us with a plaque in recognition of our "care for God’s earth in their everyday work and witness” across five categories: worship and teaching; buildings; land; community and global; and lifestyle.
St James’s won the award for initiatives that included attempting “to use renewable energy, reduce their carbon footprint, create wildlife-friendly areas such as a pond and wetland habitat on their land, and encourage outdoor worship and teaching”.
As an inner-city church in the heart of London, we hope that it will encourage other urban churches to realise how much they can care for nature and our environment regardless of their location. The three previous winners of a gold award are Hilfield Friary, Dorset (Anglican Franciscans); St Catherine’s, Burbage, in Leicester diocese; and St John’s, Leven, in Scotland.
Read about our journey towards becoming an eco-church
BIOGRAPHIES St Jame's Eco Group
Deborah is currently Churchwarden and Sustainability Champion at St James's. She is looking forward to the day when the word 'eco' becomes redundant because we humans have learned to live with limitation while celebrating a ll that this good earth offers.
Janie Bickersteth has spent a lifetime as an 'influencer', nudging and encouraging people to tread more lightly on this Earth. She lived in Durham City for 20 years, where she worked with the University , Friends of the Earth and Durham Churches Together, as well as her own parish church to support actions that reduce our footprint. After five years in Singapore, she now lives in Lambeth, where she is Chair of Incredible Edible Lambeth a network organisation working to change our current food system to a more localised, seasonal approach. She is an artist by training and continues to make ceramics and paint whenever she can.
I have had a commitment to a green and holistic spirituality since my involvement with creation
spirituality, which introduced me to the Christian contemplatives. I am a member of Greenspirit,
Muswell Hill Sustainability, and a shareholder in EN10 Energy zero carbon community energy. Through Journeying Together and Living Spirituality Connections we explore what an embodied spirituality that is embedded within the web of life means to us.
Penelope has long been exercised by the environmental catastrophe we face. She has a particular interest in in finding ways of living that honour our connectedness and interdependency with the natural world and seek to minimise the damage we do.
I'm interested in exploring the relationship between the Earth and spirituality, especially in the contexts of contemplative prayer and liturgy. I help to organize the eco contemplative liturgies, which take place in the Southwood Garden on the 4th Sunday of each month.
Paul Joined the Eco Steering Group after leading eco liturgies at St James's. He is currently responsible for communications for the Group. Paul is interested in the struggle to live lightly and endeavours to remember to carry his reusable coffee cup with him.
Joan first became aware of the problems of pollution as a youth listening to the daily "smog alerts" on the radio in her hometown of Los Angeles. More recently she kept an N95 mask on hand and wore it during the raging wildfires. She is a retired United Church of Christ minister now living in London and is grateful to be a part of the St. James's Eco Church group which challenges her to live more sustainably in this destructive Anthropocene age.
Our Eco Contemplative Liturgy takes place online monthly on Sundays at 3pm.
If you'd like to be added to the mailing list to receive the Zoom link and liturgy sheet, please email
See our EcoLibrary for documents
Our eco-blog for news and updates
Our Rooted in God's Earth blog
Eco-funerals are explored here