Why the environment?


The Diocese of Oxford believes the church has a biblical basis for caring for the earth which God made for His glory and His people’s sustenance and delight.

Climate change and environmental degradation are among the greatest challenges facing the earth and its people today, and will impact on every aspect of human life and the natural environment.

The church must take the challenge they pose seriously, and so at diocesan and parish level, we are working with groups, organisations and local authorities across the diocese seeking to help each care for creation in our context.

“For the Church of the 21st Century, good ecology is not an optional extra but a matter of justice. It is therefore central to what it means to be a Christian.”

Dr Rowan WilliamsFormer Archbishop of Canterbury

What we do

Bishop Steven has called us to be a Christlike church: contemplative, compassionate and courageous.

Scripture tells us that Christ is the Word through Whom all things were made – and in Whom all things in heaven and on earth are reconciled. That ‘all things’ includes both people and the non-human creation. And it is part of our calling as Christians to seek to live out Christ’s reconciling mission both with respect to our fellow humans and with respect to the earth we all inhabit.

We therefore seek the integration of an active concern for the environment and climate change into the life and mission of the whole diocese and its churches, and, thereby, affirm our commitment to the Fifth Mark of Mission: ‘To strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth’*.

There is no one-size fits all response to our calling to care for creation. So as a diocese we want to point to and provide a range of ideas, stories and resources that will spark and resource reflection and action.  Some initiatives are diocesan, others led by local churches and community groups.

Staff and Support

The term ‘environment’ covers a vast range of issues, and as a result includes many areas of the work and life of the diocese, which can be covered by a number of different people within the diocese, whose roles are not specifically ‘environmental’. At present, staff working on the environment include members of the Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC), Education Department, and Department of Mission.

For further information, contact Maranda St John Nicolle – email maranda@ccow.org.uk; tel 01235 851763.