Church of England Diocese of St.Edmundsbury & Ipswich Mildenhall

Our Eco Church Journey

Our environment is an important focus those attending St. Mary’s and regularly features in our worship, whether as part of eco-focused Services such as Harvest Festival, Sea Sunday or Rogationtide or during our regular worship as part of our prayers of Intercession or reflected in the choice of hymns. We explore the environment with our wider Church family too, building a wild flower garden with our under 5s playgroup (the Tinies Bee and Butterfly World), hosting “bee picnics” in the Churchyard and offering other arts and crafts activities such as building a bug hotel and celebrating the environment as part of our Fun and Faith for All events.

As St. Mary's is a Listed building we are sometimes constrained on improving its sustainability, however, we are doing what we can changing our light bulbs to more energy efficient option such as LED and encouraging lights to be switched off when not in use, recycling as much of our waste as we can and making sustainable choices when sourcing paper, cups for tea and coffee and candles for our Services. However, in the Churchyard we have been able to have more impact. Installing bat boxes, managing when the grass is mowed, setting aside an area planted with wildflowers to attract bees and butterflies and installing a composter and water butts to harvest rainwater, used to keep the plants across the grounds watered among other things.

We encourage others to care for God’s Creation via articles included in our monthly Noticesheets, whether that is ideas for their gardens at home, taking part in the National Butterfly Count or encouraging sustainable decision making such as sending a communal Christmas card. The environment is item on every agenda when the PCC meet, and we are looking at plans for swift boxes and re-assessing planting for wildlife in the Churchyard.