Vigil in Ottawa to walk to Parliament Hill
Global, Multi-faith Commitment Grows as Negotiators Meet
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ottawa, ON: December 3, 2014 – On the evening of December 7th, “Light for Lima” vigils are taking place all over the world. People are gathering with candles and solar lanterns to show their concern about climate change.
Building on the momentum from the People’s Climate March where they mobilized tens of thousands of participants, faith groups are holding vigils in thirteen countries to pray for progress towards an international agreement to address climate change. The vigils will take place as leaders are gathered for the crucial Lima climate talks.
As part of Light for Lima, Ottawa will be home to a vigil at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church (400 Sparks Street) at 7pm. Participants will then walk together to Parliament Hill. The vigil will include representatives from Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Jewish, Muslim, Baha’i, and Unitarian faith groups.
“The vigils demonstrate our love and concern for our children, vulnerable people and this precious planet,” said Joe Gunn, Executive Director of Citizens for Public Justice, the group co-organizing the vigil. “Climate change presents us with a moral challenge that calls upon the spiritual resources and action of all our faithful communities.”
“We want our Leaders to know they have our support to be more determined and generous in finding ways to a meaningful global agreement on climate change,” said Lucy Cummings, Executive Director of Faith & the Common Good: Greening Sacred Spaces, another co-organizer.
Members of the public are invited to participate in the Ottawa vigil. Vigils will take place nine communities across Canada including Edmonton, Halifax, Toronto, Montreal, and Kitchener-Waterloo.
#LightForLima is coordinated by OurVoices.net, a multi-faith, global climate campaign. OurVoices.net’s organizers hope that an outpouring of concern from people of diverse faiths around the world can help political leaders reach a climate deal.
“Many people turn to their faith or spirituality for hope in the face of challenge and suffering,” said Rev. Fletcher Harper, OurVoices.net coordinator and executive director of the religious-environmental NGO GreenFaith. “Our prayers, meditations and expressions of sincere concern can help our leaders find the courage to reach a strong climate treaty.”
In a twist on the religious tradition of candle-lit vigils, many of the vigils including the vigil in Ottawa are using solar lamps. For each lamp used in the vigils, two lamps will be delivered to African rural communities by SolarAid, enabling children to study and read after dark. The solar lamps will replace kerosene lanterns that fill poor households with noxious fumes, leading to thousands of deaths annually.
- 30 -