Ash Wednesday Declaration

Operation Noah launched their Ash Wednesday Declaration at the beginning of Lent. The Declaration challenges the Church to realise that care for God’s creation and concern about climate change are foundational to the Christian gospel and central to the church’s mission.

Operation Noah sees this Declaration as a call of considerable significance. The Declaration is framed around seven biblical themes and argues that, to be a Christian is to accept the call to radical discipleship and to work through the implications for church life of a real change in lifestyle. It marks a definitive line for the church: if we are Christians these are key issues which we need to respond to – as individuals, as local churches and as national Churches.

In 1934 the Church took a stand with the Barmen Declaration which rejected Nazism.The authors believed that the subordination of the church to the Nazi state was a confessional issue, an issue that touched the very heart of faith, not something that they could politely disagree about. Operation Noah believes climate change to be a confessional issue of similar magnitude. 

ECEN welcomes the initiative as an important sign demonstrating the commitment of a growing number churches in Europe to respond to one of the fundamental challenges of our era. The declaration emphasises the theological approach that goes beyond a short term activism. Peter Pavlovic, Secretary of ECEN underlines: ‘the declaration is a substantial call for a needed change of our habits and lifestyles so deeply rooted in western societies. This call is the issue of justice.  It is  prerequisite for discovering of a new dimension of hope and for rediscovering of one of the signs of ‘new creation’ in the situation of postmodern indistrualised society.’

Operation Noah is encouraging individuals and church fellowships to read through the Ash Wednesday Declaration carefully and then, if willing, to sign the pledge on their website.