January Eco Church Gathering

On Sunday 26th January, we met for our Eco Church gathering. We met an hour earlier than usual, because we had a visit from Neil Pugmire, who produces the Diocesan Magazine, to interview us about our Eco Church activities. Look out for us in the March edition!

The RSPB’s Big Garden Birdwatch gave us a focus for our activities this month.

We signed up St Helens Church, downloaded the bird identification sheets, and set off around the churchyard to record the bird life.

Unfortunately it was pouring with rain, so we didn’t stay outside as long as we’d hoped! But we recorded a maximum at any one time of: 5 wood pigeons, 1 robin, 3 blackbirds, 1 Jay, 1 chaffinch, 2 blue tits, 6 house sparrows, 2 crows and about 30 black headed seagulls (with white heads!).

We then got busy making bird feeders of different kinds, to make sure the birds have plenty to keep them going through the winter months.

We made impressive feeders from re-used plastic bottles, cutting feeding holes and making stick perches.

We made feeders from pine cones, collected from the scotts pine trees outside the swimming pool in Ryde. Smearing them with peanut butter and covering them in bird seed was enormous fun! Finger-licking was discouraged, but tolerated.

We also made feeders with garden wire, twisted into spirals and hoops, and threaded with grapes, cranberries, blueberries, popcorn and cheerios. They really were good enough to eat!

Liz Fletcher led a beautiful time of worship, with the theme of “From Darkness Came Light”. We lit candles as a symbol of hope in dark days.

Liz had prepared gifts of wildflower seeds, pots and labels. We will plant out the wild flowers in the hedgerows of St Helens in the spring, to encourage butterflies, bees and other pollinators.

We also decided to mark Earth Hour – 8.30-9.30 pm on March 28th – with a community event, so watch this space!

All this was followed by a shared supper of tea, bread, cheese, savoury muffins, salad, chutney and cakes. A wonderful afternoon of eco-fellowship!

Our next Eco Church gathering will be Sunday 23rd February at 3.30pm.

You are most welcome to join us.

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