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Letter to the editor: Rev. Dr. David Barker: Ringing the bells as a reminder of the urgency of the dangers of climate change

Ringing bells have a historic function of warning.
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Photo by Shaouraav Shreshtha on Unsplash

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We at CENTRALongmont Presbyterian Church invite you to join us Saturday, October 30 from 11:00-11:30 a.m. as we ring our church bell for God's creation.

We mostly associate church bells with calls to worship, weddings, and significant national celebrations. But they also have another historic function: to ring out warnings. Our planet has given us warning after warning, through floods, wildfires, droughts, heat domes, and hurricanes, that we have profoundly affected the balance of nature. Here in Colorado, we see reduced snowpack, earlier snowmelt, increased risk of high-intensity wildfires, extreme weather events, an increased number of “high heat” days, and ozone action alerts.

As Jesus-followers, we are concerned with the millions around the world who are being profoundly affected. Chief among them are the poor, who have contributed the least to the problem, and nations already suffering the severest effects of drought, fires, floods, and crop failures. The poor in this country will also be the first to suffer from rising food prices, heat exhaustion, or the inability to insure their homes and businesses against these extreme events. The climate crisis is a poverty crisis, refugee crisis, hunger crisis, health crisis. It is a human crisis.

The bells of churches in Glasgow, Scotland will be ringing out a welcome October 30 to delegates from 197 nations meeting for the 26th International Conference to address the Climate Crisis (COP 26). The bells will also be ringing as a warning to remind them — and us — of the urgency of the dangers we all now face. We will be joining with churches in Glasgow and around the world to sound the alarm and lift these delegates in prayer for courage and strength. We invite you, and other faith communities to join us in this call to action.

www.bit.ly/ringoutforclimatecop26

Rev. Dr. David Barker
Senior Pastor

Jennifer Haratsaris
Director of Mission and Outreach

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