27 October 2007

Save the primates

My name is Savi Hensman, I am active in the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement and Inclusive Church, I live in London and I will be contributing to the blog from time to time.

‘Third of primates “under threat”’, a BBC news headline yesterday announced. This was not about the struggles in the Anglican Communion, but instead about the threat to apes, monkeys and other (mainly four-legged) primates because of the destruction of their habitats. These animals are not only beautiful and precious in their own right but also contribute to the understanding of human diversity, yet many are at risk of extinction because of human carelessness and greed. Another report, by the United Nations Environment Programme, highlights a crisis which involves extinction of species, climate change and excessive consumption of the world’s resources by the rich, among other factors. Some industrialists have objected to firm measures to cut emissions, and there has been an alarming lack of political will. Yet millions die each year because they cannot get access to clean air and water, and humankind as a whole is in peril if urgent action is not taken.

Senior clergy will no doubt continue to debate who should wield most power, which types of Christians should be included and on what terms. Yet those of us who are laypeople and parish clergy have been called by One who is even greater than a roomful of archbishops, assured of our worth and sent out to be the church, in an increasingly imperilled world. Working with other people of goodwill, we can perhaps halt the destruction before it is too late. So let us go forth and help save the primates!

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