By Ellen Teague
Parishioners of Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Harpenden received the CAFOD Livesimply award on 2nd February for championing sustainable living. Their efforts focused on promoting a simpler, greener lifestyle in solidarity with the world’s poorest communities. Our Lady of Lourdes is the sixth church to earn the award in the diocese and the 52nd in England and Wales.
Receiving the award on behalf of the parish, Canon Anthony Dwyer was delighted with the commitment of so many parishioners to the programme.
Suggestions on living a simpler life are posted twice a month in the parish newsletter. A Fairtrade stall at the recent Christmas fair encouraged parishioners to buy Fairtrade goods. Several pedal bikes have been recycled and given to refugee families living locally. An environmental audit of the parish buildings has been undertaken and steps to reduce energy consumption planned.
A Livesimply plaque will be officially presented at a celebratory Mass on 10th March and a memorial tree planted at the front of the church.
There is still plenty to do. Graham Ryan, parish Livesimply coordinator adds, ‘It is essential to keep the momentum going in the spirit of Laudato Si’, and that is just what the Livesimply group intends to do!’