400 people attended workshops equipping people of faith for climate action at St Martin in the Fields, hearing from faith leaders, community activists, NGO experts and sharing ideas and inspiration across faith communities. One workshop heard speakers from Christian Climate Action, XR Jews and the Dharma Action Network for Climate Action about their faith inspired action as part of Extinction Rebellion; another heard from Kamran Shezad and Maria Zafar about how the Bahu Trust and Islamic Relief have engaged Imams for climate action, drawing out wider lessons for other faith communities; other workshops focussed on engaging faith communities in lifestyle change; faith based action as part of the global divestment movement; Eco Church and Eco Synagogue; Eco Sikh; and the actions taking place around the UK in June for Buddhist Action Month.
1,000 people of faith then gathered with faith leaders from many faith communities across the UK on the steps of St Martin in the Fields, for a Walk of Witness along Whitehall towards the House of Commons.
Addressing Sky News at the start of the Walk of Witness, former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said “Climate change presses hardest on those least able to adapt, the most vulnerable communities. We must not let the poorest communities in the world carry the cost.”
We mustn't "let the poorest communities in the world carry the cost" of climate change.— Sky News (@SkyNews) June 26, 2019
The former archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Rowan Williams is joining climate protesters in central London. #NewClimate
Find all the latest from Sky News here: https://t.co/ChvDaQpbPe pic.twitter.com/Gles5Rkc0l
Also speaking ahead of the Walk of Witness, Rev Giles Goddard, Chair of the Faith for the Climate Network, was interviewed along with Qari Asim MBE, by the Christian Muslim Forum
What’s Muslim about caring for the environment?— Christian Muslim Forum (@ChrisMusForum) June 26, 2019
What’s Christian about caring for the environment?
Hear Canon Giles Goddard @gilesgoddard @fftcnetwork, Qari Asim @QariAsim @LeedsMosque Bp of Wolverhampton #ClimateEmergency #TheTimeIsNow @christian_aid @IslamicReliefUK pic.twitter.com/3aNJcHpHSn
The Walk of Witness culminated in an interfaith Speaker Event packed to capacity by 900 people at Church House in Westminster, where we heard inspirational contributions from Christine Allen, Director of CAFOD, Qari Asim MBE, Chair of MINAB, former Archbishop Lord Rowan Williams, Quaker school striker Anya Nanning Ramamurthy, Buddhist teacher Vishvapani, and Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg.
Inspired by all these wonderful speakers, people went out to join the largest ever mass lobby of Parliament, meeting their local MPs on every pavement around Parliament.
It was fantastic to see so many people of faith come together, to add their voices to the wider lobby, and to each make their distinct and distinctive contribution as people of faith, to the wider movement.