In Faith in Action

EU-CORD CEO Ruth Faber reflects on the theme of hope for this Christmas message, in the photograph you can see some members of Christian Climate Action Belgium’s ‘climate choir’ which brings truth and hope through song.

As the year 2022 comes to a close, I have found myself reflecting on the concept of hope. At our recent General Assembly, Hugo Slim identified hope as one of the three big ideas that we should consider and respond to. He reminded us that even when we feel defeated, it is not always the end. There is a way through the struggle, we just have to find it.

I have also been participating in the Deep Waters course, which examines climate grief and eco-anxiety through the lens of love, grief, truth, lament, wisdom, justice, and hope. The course begins by acknowledging that “it can be hard to know what hope is now,” a sentiment which will resonate with many climate and bio-diversity advocates and activists.

As a person of the Christian faith, I see many signs of hope in the stories of the nativity, which take place in a social and political context which would be recognisable to many today. The hope response by Mary after the angel Gabriel announces to her that she will bear the Son of God is captured for us in the text of the Magnificat, which includes the lines:

He has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,
and has lifted up the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.

It is a reminder that our search for justice – social, economic or climate is part of a much longer justice narrative.

As we enter 2023, I plan to take the following forward with me:

  • From Hugo Slim: as a faith-based network, we should seek out sources (and stories) of hope and share them with others.
  • From Deep Waters: develop an active hope and ask:
    • What are the possibilities in the situation we find ourselves in?
    • What may be accomplished?
    • What is the roadmap for a different future?

Can I focus more on being hope rather than looking to feel hopeful?

And finally, three gifts for you:

  1. Get into the Christmas spirit with this folksy version of Silent Night by the David Crowther Band: Silent Night.
  2. Mystics might prefer this piece by spoken word performer and poet Kae Tempest. This clip is from Glastonbury 2022 but I heard them perform at the Greenbelt Festival: Grace
  3. The course ‘Deep Waters: a project of Borrowed Time’ is curated by Green Christians and is available here:
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statue of Colston, blindfolded by activists

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