Malawi, a landlocked country in Southeastern region of Africa with vibrant highlands situated next to an abundant water source, is suffering. Floods caused by climate change have devastated the land, forcing Christian missionaries to take action. The thing about climate change is that it no longer remains an abstraction locked in the future. Climate change is here, and it is impacting the world's poorest communities now.
Evangelical Environmental Network's, Alexei Laushkin, traveled to the region and experienced first hand the impact climate change is having, particularly on the most vulnerable within these societies. Widows, orphans and the elderly need our help, not just in reducing carbon emissions to reverse the impact of climate change, but to remedy its immediate impact.
One way this is happening is through the Green Climate Fund, an initiative that aims to care for the vulnerable, just as Pope Francis has called all people faith to do. Faith-based climate initiatives are two-fold. We must not only reduce carbon emissions, but care for those being impacted by climate change now.
Alexei Laushkin | Evangelical Environmental Network
In the summer of 2013, I traveled to Malawi as part of a trip organized by the ministry I serve with the Evangelical Environmental Network. Like many Christians who travel overseas for missions, I was changed by the experience.
What made this trip so unique is that I went simply to listen and ask questions. Over the course of 10 days I got to do exactly that.
There’s something very refreshing about getting outside of yourself long enough to orient yourself around the lives of other people. To see, to taste, to sense how another culture lives and another people, equally made in the image of God, strive for fullness of life.
Malawi has long been a center of vibrant Christianity, which was evident in the people we spoke with. I can remember one interview in particular where we delved into the subject of sorrow and loss, a subject that we approach uncomfortably in the west. There were actually two of us interviewing this woman. She said when she was sorrowful she would go to her closest friend and sing the songs they sang in church.
I’ll never forget when that dear woman sang for me, her song of comfort in the midst of loss. I was deeply moved.
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