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Ruth Valerio joins Archbishop of Canterbury in launching first ever green Lent campaign

04 Feb 2020

Thousands of people and churches are being urged to take action on climate change as the Church of England goes green for Lent.

The first official green Lent campaign from the Church of England will provide Christians with a set of 40 reflections, actions and prayers on the environment.

The #LiveLent 2020 scheme is based on the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent Book, Saying Yes to Life, by Dr Ruth Valerio, Director of Global Influencing and Advocacy at Tearfund.

The campaign comes with daily reflections and actions for the whole of Lent for both adults and youngsters. Instead of giving up chocolate or alcohol for Lent, people are being encouraged to think about taking action such as switching to renewable power, making at least one journey by foot or planting a tree.

The campaign asks people to think about things such as how much water goes into making a pair of jeans, whether they could “twin” their toilet to help provide sanitation in poor countries, and the last time they looked at the night sky.

Environmentalists, activists and climate experts gathered at Lambeth Palace, London, on Tuesday for the campaign’s launch, taking place on the same day the Prime Minister launches the official strategy for key UN climate talks being hosted by the UK.

The panel consisted of Archbishop Justin Welby, Dr Ruth Valerio, Ali Angus who leads eco-church at St Leonard’s in Streatham, Instagram influencer Natalie Davies and Dr Richard Miller from the Committee on Climate Change.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said: “We urgently need to rebuild our relationship with our planet. To do this, we need to change our habits – in how we pray and how we act.

“Lent is not just about discipline. It’s about allowing Christ to show us what’s keeping us from loving and serving Him – and joyfully letting it go.

“Whatever age you are, this Lent I hope you’ll engage with God’s plea for us to care for His creation, and that these campaign resources will help you on that journey.”

Ruth, from Tearfund and author of Saying Yes To life, said: “Responding to the poverty and environmental crises of our times goes right to the heart of what it means to be a Christian in today’s world, following God who calls us to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with him.”

The reflections for green Lent run from Ash Wednesday on February 26 to Easter Day on April 12.


For further information or interview requests call Melissa Barnston on 07929 335 146 or Tearfund's Media Team on 020 3906 3131. For out of hours media enquiries please call 07929 339813.  About Tearfund Tearfund is a Christian relief and development agency and a member of the Disasters’ Emergency Committee. Tearfund has been working around the world for more than 50 years responding to disasters and helping lift communities out of poverty. For more information about the work of Tearfund, please visit

Dr Ruth Valerio with Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby
Ali Angus, who leads Eco Church at St Leonard's, Streatham
The campaign launch panel, L-R: Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby; Natalie Davies; Dr Richard Millar, Committee on Climate Change; Ali Angus, St Leonard's Streatham; Dr Ruth Valerio, Tearfund Director of Global Advocacy & Influencing and author of Saying Yes to Life

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