St Agnes Lesotho – Cleanliness is next to Godliness
The St Agnes guild in the Diocese of Lesotho had their retreat on the 25th to the 27th January 2019. It was themed “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people” Titus 2:11-15
It is in this service that spiritual purity was hard hammered on; from Rev. Fr. Stephen Manyabeane’s sermon through to the Green Anglicans’ coordinators who were present. Young girls were taught and encouraged to maintain purity and cleanliness.
Our Green Movement environmentalists took it further by stating how incomplete it is to keep a pure body when on the other hand the bigger body, planet earth, which God has put us as stewards of is being ripped off its resources.
The Provincial Green Anglicans Youth Coordinator, Bino Makhalanyane, indicated with several references from the bible that the stewardship of taking care and of protecting our environment including resources is not manmade but it is a command from above. Following the Gospel, following in the footsteps of Jesus, living a faith based life, honoring the word of God and living a clean life are all interrelated with the care we give to our surroundings. It is incomplete to carry out one task living out the other. All these aspects must be done and all touched.
Furthermore, it was greenlighted that as human beings we’re bound to fall into the trap of sinning, hence God always offers second chances. Multiple second chances. If we repent from our sins and focus on the future we’re given such a chance. That is the similarity in the environmental lifestyle, the damaged we’ve caused so far can be forgiven if we take a pledge to protect, guard, be responsible stewards, effective disciples of mother earth and to act now. Action to PROTECT, action to EDUCATE, action to RAISE AWARENESS and SENSETISE those who are in the dark. It is the ultimate responsibility of the young people in the church because in the next ten years agricultural production will have dropped by up to 70% as stats state now.
With a very vibrant session, the girls and other present members through the simplest yet effective ways on how to reduce the use of plastic and other products that put the earth in danger. E.g. going to a fast food shop with a personal reusable lunchbox, ask the waiter to prepare the order in that so as to reduce plastic. Say no to straws. Say no to plastic bags. Carry your own reusable groceries bag. Most importantly make these criteria trend all over social media platform carrying common hashtags
In wrapping; the Diocesan Coordinator Mr. Thupane portrayed that the baton was put in the girls and congregants’ hands to assume responsibility of such. With the already present structures within the church, the task now was put to them to show a buzz of environmentalism within the church and communities they reside in. Guild members, leaderships and all concerned parties have to liaise with one another to make a concrete and sound devotion to the Green Movement in the Church in order to yield more positive outcome.
Green Anglicans Coordinator
Diocese of Lesotho
Thupane A. T. Taaso