11th March 2012:
Awarded the Eco-Congregation status
Eco-Congregation Award presented by founders of A Rocha
The Eco-Congregation award for St Mary?s Upton in the Wirral was presented on March 11th by Peter Harris, who was a former curate at St Mary?s. Peter and Miranda went on from St. Mary?s to found A Rocha as a field studies centre in Portugal in 1983, and it has now become an international Christian Conservation organisation. Peter was involved in the discussions which led to Eco-Congregation becoming part of A Rocha, and said this was the first time he had been asked to present the award.
Peter and Miranda were at St Mary?s for a World Church weekend, which just happened to be two weeks after the church heard they had achieved the award, and they presented the plaque at four services.? Peter gave an example in one of his sermons of an A Rocha supporting church in rural Brazil which has become an ?Eco-Congregation?, by collecting old plastic bottles and making them into plastic brushes.
St Mary?s were commended for an (energy saving) ?lighting project; some great ongoing theological teaching on creation as integral to the gospel with personal commitment and responsibility, links with A Rocha and Living Lightly Magazine articles; and the impressive ??spare land?? project, to provide benefit to wildlife, beauty and environmental education for all ages.?