Green Advent

Second year ordinand Helen Randall (Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney) is the SEI Student Chapter Eco Congregation Scotland rep. for 2022-23. Helen is actively involved, along with fellow Year Group ‘Green Champions’ Pat Ellison and Enza Gibson, in monitoring and encouraging SEI’s pro-environmental practice and perspective, particularly through partnership with Eco Congregation Scotland.

As one outworking of this, SEI staff and students, along with a member of Helen’s home congregation, St Magnus’ Church, Lerwick, Shetland, responded to a request from Eco Congregation Scotland to contribute short ‘overtly environmentally militant’ reflections to this year’s video Advent Calendar.

Helen summarises these thought-provoking videos as follows:

“The Revd Dr Richard Tiplady based his reflection (28th November) on Isaiah 2.3, ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord’. We heard about his experience of being in the mountains, as a form of spiritual discipline.

Marilyn Pope, Vestry Secretary and Eco Congregation Scotland rep. for St Magnus (6th December) spoke in Shetlandic, with English sub-titles, of the gifts (hansels) associated with St Nicholas. She asked us to think about how we can offer gifts for the earth and the sea, how changing our ways can make a difference in a small (peerie) or large (muckle) way.

Helen Randall (7th December) based her reflection on Matthew 3. 1-3, ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight’. She spoke about peatland restoration as one of the most effective ways to manage CO2 levels in the atmosphere, as well as showing respect for the landscape. The photo above shows an area of peatland restoration above Girlsta, Shetland, about four miles north of Gott where Helen lives.

Pat Ellison reflected on the Baptist’s words in Matthew 3. 7-10, (10th December). She voiced the anger of the earth at the willful destruction of God’s garden.”

The four two-minute videos can be accessed through the following links:

For Richard:

For Marilyn:

For Helen: 

For Pat:

Links courtesy of the Revd David Coleman, ECS Chaplain
Photos courtesy of Ross Stirling-Young and Helen Randall