I can’t praise the CRES course highly enough. I have always had a passion to care for the environment and felt this should be a crucial part of my lifestyle as a follower of Jesus. I have a BSc in Environmental Sciences and I have worked in the environment and international development sectors for many years. I currently work at University of East Anglia managing research projects addressing the Sustainable Development Goals in developing countries. My work gives me a keen awareness of the crisis our planet faces and that the poorest are experiencing the worst impacts.
As a member of Baptist churches for my whole life, I have often wondered why churches and Christians are not engaging more with environmental issues. This course gave me a deeper understanding of what the Bible says about creation care and equipped me with a theological grounding to engage other Christians in conversations about science, justice and faith.
The range of modules is excellent, and I enjoyed every module I studied, but those that stand out for me include Globalisation and Faith and Rural Communities. I appreciated the wider reading and reflective practice which the work diaries prompted. Having a tutor to encourage and advice was invaluable.
The research project gave me an opportunity to explore how the Baptist family in the UK is responding to environmental issues. This has helped to stimulate conversations within the Baptist community, and I have since been involved with the recent launch of the Baptist Union Environment Network, which I hope will improve environmental awareness and action within UK Baptist Churches.
Perhaps the most stimulating and rewarding parts of CRES are the residential and online gatherings. These events always provide stimulating presentations from inspiring speakers and give opportunity to build relationships with peers and tutors – as well as amazing food from the Cuddesdon kitchen! CRES has given me a sense of solidarity with fellow Christians who care for the environment and hope for the future.