Meet Rachel Mash, a pillar of the Green Anglicans movement

Rev. Rachel Mash is using her influence as the environmental coordinator of the Anglican Church of South Africa to do a lot of positive work. She is a passionate advocate of climate change and with that in mind, founded the Green Anglicans Movement which has spread from South Africa to Swaziland Lesotho, Angola, Mozambique and Namibia.

Rev. Mash’s concern with climate issues and the environment began with her faith in her church. Its followers have an obligation to renew and sustain the integrity of creation. It is indeed the only Earth that we have. The Anglican Church of South Africa has eight priority areas, the fifth of which is caring for the environment. As her Church’s Environmental Coordinator for the last three years, Rev. Mash is committed to training the clergy in environmental education such as workshops or eco-retreats and influencing the youth in her community to grow the Green Anglicans movement.

Care for the environment is an essential part of life and a moral requirement that we can all chose to live by.

The movement has three areas of focus: spirituality, local action and advocacy. In the aspect of spirituality, the Anglican Church encourages all churches to celebrate the Season of Creation in September each year as well as St. Francis Day, World Environment Day and World Water Day. For Lent, Rev. Mash’s Green Anglicans movement promotes a Carbon Fast, encouraging people to take 40 steps to minimize their carbon footprints. The Anglican Church regularly produces new books for clergy that include background information, fact sheets and study group study material to help expand the knowledge around the importance of water, land and climate change.

Local action is very close to Rev. Mash’s heart. She supports the move for local churches to go green, while rural churches are asked to adapt organic farming, tree planting, litter pick-up, recycling and water conservation. The biggest challenge has come with urban churches, which she hopes can cut back on electricity, water saving and little but positive lifestyle changes around recycling and modes of transportation.

Last but not least, the Green Anglicans movement has been actively advocating on behalf of our Earth with campaigns like One Million Climate Jobs and the one against nuclear power in South Africa.  They’ve also taken a firm stand against fracking. Rev. Mash played a critical supporting role in the South African Anglican Church passing a resolution to divest from fossil fuels in 2016.

As a Climate Reality Leader trained by US Vice President Al Gore in 2014 in Johannesburg, Rev. Mash is making the Anglican Church of South Africa an example for religions across the world to follow.

Follow the movement on www.greenanglicans.org and on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.

An African Climate Reality Leader from South Africa, Rachel Mash is part of a dynamic group of world-changers shaping the conversation on climate in forums ranging from family dinners to international summits. Together they are building a 21st-century movement for solutions to tackle climate change and foster environmental sustainability in Africa and world-wide.