Praying for COP 26
We all know, we’ve known for months, that something called COP26 is happening in November in Glasgow. (The Pre-COP conference is happening NOW in Milan.)
How much more do we know? Until writing this post I didn’t even know what COP stands for (“Conference of the Parties.”)
It is an international summit dealing with climate change, and it’s hosted by the government of the UK, whose record isn’t the worst, but isn’t that great either.
Among the things you and I can do is write to our MPs, try not to buy or use single-use plastic (etc) and glue ourselves to roads if we feel inclined.
If we are religious people, we can also pray.
This is part of a Franciscan prayer from Christian Aid:
May God bless you with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may tirelessly work for justice, freedom, and peace among all peoples… May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you really can make a difference in this world, so that you are able, with God’s grace, to do what others claim cannot be done. Amen.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve been looking for a nice simple but practical prayer diary for COP26, and maybe I haven’t looked hard enough, but I haven’t found one. There’s good stuff on the Christian Aid and Tear Fund websites https://www.tearfund.org/campaigns/reboot-campaign/prayer-for-the-climate and https://www.christianaid.org.uk/pray/prayer-chain/creative-prayer-ideas
But it’s still not quite what I wanted, so I’m having to make my own prayer plan, and here it is.
SUNDAY: Focus on God. Thank Him for creation, appreciate creation. Repent for our misuse of His gifts, and our fellow people.
MONDAY: Pray for Glasgow and the preparations. The people getting ready, from police to cleaners, from taxi drivers to reporters to pizza deliverers. And the people preparing briefing papers or negotiating positions in their home countries. This is the conference website: https://ukcop26.org/
TUESDAY: Practicalities of the conference: for protection from terrorism and covid in particular, but also from other dangers (food poisoning? Microphones malfunctioning?) For communication over barriers of language, culture, and frequent political or personal dislike. For family members left at home.
WEDNESDAY: For the decisions that need to be made and the challenges faced. For progress in particular from countries like China and Australia, but not them alone. For a determination to face down the interests of big business; for world leaders who dislike each other to work together.
THURSDAY: For public opinion – for all the desperate and determined protesters (Extinction Rebellion and Insulate Britain and others), for all those who raise awareness; for media reporting and social media. For the teenagers who are in despair.
FRIDAY: For justice for the poor to be at the centre of the conference’s concerns. For world leaders to care for those who have no voice, who will be flooded or baked – or caught in wars over fertile land and water supplies.
This is part of a speech made by a Ugandan activist in Milan: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/world-africa-58742341
This is the website of the Young Christian Climate Network https://www.yccn.uk/ who organised a relay march through Britain to Glasgow, and are calling on the UK government to:
- Reinstate the aid budget to 0.7% GDP
- Secure agreement from rich countries to meet and exceed the decade-old commitment of $100bn a year for climate finance
- Provide finance for climate-induced loss and damage; the costs incurred by climate impacts which cannot be adapted to.
- Push for the debts of the world’s poorest countries to be cancelled so they can better confront the climate crisis and other urgent priorities
This is the website of something called the Energy Transitions Commission: https://www.energy-transitions.org/
SATURDAY: For every person, company, department, church and government as we move on.
So, more succinctly, I shall try to:
SUNDAY: Look to God
MONDAY: Pray for the conference preparations
TUESDAY: Pray for the conference practicalities
WEDNESDAY: Pray for the leaders present and their decisions
THURSDAY: Pray for the watching and worrying world
FRIDAY: Pray for a priority for the poor
SATURDAY: Pray for the time afterwards.
The conference starts on Monday 31st October. That gives me four weeks from this Sunday.
Love from the PPI Blogger
PS My apologies for pushing the comments on the Fifth Commandment on to next time!