Scores of UCA members and Synod staff joined an estimated 100,000 people to march in Melbourne as part of the Global Climate Strike on 20 September, demanding action against climate change.
Organisers School Strike 4 Climate said 300,000 people rallied nationally, calling on the federal government to commit to a target of net-zero carbon emissions and 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030, as well as no new coal, oil or gas projects.
Moderator Rev Denise Liersch was a vocal supporter of the march.
“We are all connected to the Earth,” she said. “Let’s live with care and respect towards the whole creation.”
Synod Social Justice Advocate Denisse Sandoval said the Church demanded practical solutions and “responsible care” in the face of climate change.
“We are striking and marching because, as people of faith, we know that we can’t just pray climate change away,” she said.
“We need to stand up for what we believe in, which is responsible care for this planet.”
UnitingWorld National Director Dr Sureka Goringe said it was imperative that Christians spoke up.
“Right now, fighting climate change is how we can best love our neighbours. We cannot be Christian and silent on this issue,” she said.
An estimated 22,000 people gathered in Hobart.
Synod Liason Minister (Tasmania) Rohan Pryor marched in Launceston alongside UCA members and Scotch Oakburn College students.
The UCA was also represented at several other marches across regional centres in Victoria and Tasmania.
All UCA members were encouraged to participate in an invitation from National Assembly President Dr Deidre Palmer.
“We are passionately committed to contributing our voice and action toward a world in which all people, creatures and the Earth can flourish,” Dr Palmer said.
Many congregations took up Dr Palmer’s invitation and marched in Melbourne, including Murrumbeena, St Leonard’s (Brighton Beach), Brunswick, High Street Road (Mount Waverly), Ringwood and Village Uniting Church (Mt Eliza).