What’s happening around the world?
The Faiths 4 Climate Justice Week of Action is being organised by GreenFaith International, a global multi-faith network of partner organisations including ARRCC. In the Week of Action we want to add our voices to the calls of people from low-income, climate-impacted countries for stronger action to shift our economies off dependence on fossil fuels.
From the 3rd to the 12th of May people of all faiths around Australia will join publicly with others around the world calling for a clear plan to get us out of this crisis and move boldly and rapidly away from coal and gas and towards a sustainable future.
Everywhere, we are seeing unprecedented climate impacts and climate-fuelled storms, fires, droughts, and wars. Millions of people are being horribly affected. Here in Australia, we’re seeing more and more floods, bushfires and droughts.
We love this shared home we call Earth. For many people of faith, it is sacred. And we want to hand it on to our kids in all its beauty and wonder, and for them to be safe. Yet governments everywhere are not doing nearly enough, and that includes ours. The world has just agreed at the most recent climate summit in Dubai to move away from fossil fuels. Yet neither major party in Australia has a plan to do so, or a date to do it by.
As people of conscience from many different faith and spiritual traditions, we know this is wrong, and that it’s time to take action. We need our elected leaders to agree that this is bigger than politics - and that it’s urgent.
This is a chance to unite for what we love. And we will do so from Nairobi to New York City and Sydney to Jakarta, from Perth to Cairns and Hobart to Tin Can Bay. Previous global actions have involved faith communities in around 40 countries, so this is a chance to be part of something big.
What’s happening here in Australia?
We will be calling on the federal leaders of both major political parties to outline their plan to move away from coal and gas and towards clean energy, and to provide a date by which they will do so. We will also call for an end to public money going towards fossil fuel industries. We will ask both leaders to support a proposed global Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty to phase out fossil fuels and to make a massive historic investment in clean energy that will create jobs in the process. And we will call on them to love our nearest neighbours by getting behind their calls for a fossil fuel free Pacific.
Requests of all faith communities:
We’re asking faith communities with places of worship, large or small, to hang a faith-and-climate banner. We’d like the message on these banners to be about one of the main things we’re calling for mentioned above, particularly for no more coal and gas projects. These various messages are on the ARRCC webpage: www.arrcc.org.au/banners
The Week of Action gives us a time frame to work towards. So that the media moment is as poignant as possible, we're asking that the banners should go up a few days before (no more than one week) but they could remain up afterwards. Hopefully, they can also be displayed in the lead-up to the 2025 Federal Election. Our suggested banners are nonpartisan.
We will be addressing the leaders of both major parties.
We are not partisan, and we need this to be above politics.
We’re asking religious leaders to give sermons or khutbahs at services dedicated to climate action.
In the lead-up to the Week of Action, let's have at least one regular service dedicated to prayer and meditation on the theme of action for a safe climate. Could faith leaders please speak to their congregations about the need to move away from coal and gas to protect our sacred Earth?
We will make our voices heard.
By having faith-and-climate banners up, large and small, in places of worship iconic and humble, by speaking out whether we’re a well-known religious leader or an everyday person of faith, and by doing so together we will speak with a loud and powerful voice, including in the media.
During the Week of Action we will launch a letter-writing campaign. We will ask people of faith to write to both the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition to ask for the policy changes we are collectively asking for on the banners: no more coal and gas projects, no more public money to prop up fossil fuel industries, a fair and orderly transition for workers, proper levels of finance for adaptation and Loss and Damage for low-income, climate-impacted countries.
Special requests of communities with large, iconic places of worship:
We’re calling on large, iconic places of worship to hang a huge banner from the side of your building.
Details are being negotiated with decision-makers at the Cathedrals and central Mosques, Temples, Synagogues, Houses of Prayer who we have been contacting. Depending on the size of banner, the cost could be circa $600 - $1,000. We regret that ARRCC is generally not in a position to assist with costs, but we will help with where to buy the banners and possibly how to mount them. (Contact Tejopala [email protected] or 0498 475 056, or [email protected])
Hold a multi-faith service to bless the banner outside one iconic place of worship in each major city. We would like these events to be attractive to the media and coordinated, so that we can draw the attention of the broader public to our message. It would be good if local federal MPs and candidates could be invited to these events.
We will be asking very senior faith leaders from all traditions to speak out together.
We'll be asking senior faith leaders to attend the multi-faith services outside these iconic places of worship in front of the giant banners, and then speak to the media.
Requests of communities with smaller places of worship:
We’re asking all smaller places of worship to put up a banner.
Let's see a lot of these up during the Week of Action. There are designs already made at www.arrcc.org.au/banners and, if the banner is ordered from Easy Signs, the cost is around $140. We’re aiming for 100 to 200 places of worship big or small nationwide. Please check these out and order yours!
We’re asking religious leaders to give sermons, homilies or khutbahs at services dedicated to climate action.
Let's hold services dedicated to the themes of the Week of Action. Could Rabbis, Teachers, Priests, Pastors and Ministers please speak to their own congregations and communities about the need to move away from coal and gas to protect our sacred Earth.
Invite your congregation to attend the flagship service at your nearest iconic place of worship.
We’re asking for as many people of faith as possible to come to the outdoor multi-faith services where the large banners will be blessed or, better still, unfurled. If there's no iconic place of worship near you with a large banner, you may want to organise a service by the banner on your own place of worship on the day. It would be good if local federal MPs and candidates could be invited to these events.
This is the first step
The Week of Action will take place roughly a year before the next federal election. This is our chance as communities of faith to make it clear that we need all parties to head into that election with a serious plan to move away from fossil fuels. We will continue to press for this in the weeks and months leading up to it.
Find out more
There will also be up-to-date information over the coming weeks on this webpage including resources for you to hold a service about the week of action in the period leading up to it to build support in your congregation.
Help make it huge
There are teams of people meeting on Zoom all over the country who will be making this BIG. Come along and get involved! Check out our events page for a regular list of these meetings.
Register your interest
If you're keen to help to make this week of action a huge success, please fill out the form below to tell us what you're up for.