It’s been great to see churches playing their part in the St Albans Sustainability Festival.

#Sustfest19 has spanned three weeks and featured masses of events in St Albans, Harpenden and the surrounding villages, ending on June 1st.

From the flagship ‘market takeover’ in St Albans to numerous talks, walks, allotment open days, cooking demonstrations and much more, the Festival has grown to be an important part of the district’s calendar.

Church events in St Albans included St Stephen’s with St Julian’s Church running a week-long display about how they are becoming more environmentally friendly – raising awareness of climate change, environmental issues, pollution and cherishing their churchyard.

St Stephen’s has been using an ‘Eco Church’ framework from Christian environmental group ‘A Rocha.’ It shows churches how to express their care for God’s world through worship and teaching, as well as practical advice on caring for buildings and land, and challenging the lifestyle choices of the congregation.

Elsewhere, St Luke’s and St Albans Vineyard organised Upcycle and Recycle Fairs, showing how the life of products we might throw away could be extended.

At St Paul’s, Fleetville, Paul Cook, head of advocacy for global development agency Tearfund spoke of the impact of global warming and how individual actions could make a real difference.

While churches and Christians are getting enthused about environmental issues, we need to confess many of us were late to the party.

For decades, groups like Friends of the Earth were active before most church groups got involved. Now at last churches, with their networks in communities across the country, are making their voices and actions known.