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Climate Justice Diaries: 'We Ask For Your Prayers and Support'

Climate Justice Diaries: 'We Ask For Your Prayers and Support'

Wednesday February 2

Tropical Storm Ana brought devastation to large parts of Mozambique and Malawi last week. Carol Finlay reports on the latest updates from Church of Scotland partners in the two countries.


A storm-damaged clinic in Mozambique


Following the weather at the weekend in Scotland, we can understand a little of the disruption and destruction wind and rain can cause.

Our Storms Malik and Corrie were, however, small fry in relation to Tropical Storm Ana which devastated the north of Mozambique and particularly the southern end of Malawi, but also further north too. We have been hearing first hand accounts in the aftermath of the widespread damage to the area, where we have colleagues and friends in the Evangelical Church of Christ in Mozambique (IECM) and the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP).

Rev Dinis Antônio João, General Secretary of the IECM, shared how the storm has caused numerous difficulties, destroying many houses, farmland, clinics and schools, and has asked that we prayerfully remember the situation as the already stretched church attempts to reach out to those affected over a number of its presbyteries. This will be done in conjunction with the Government of Mozambique, which has begun a rehabilitation programme.

Since the cyclone ripped through the area, the President of Malawi has declared a ‘State of Disaster’ and news of deaths and missing people have now reached the hundreds. Many are displaced and living in community buildings, with few or no personal belongings. For many, this is not the first time this has occurred and we know from our scientists and other weather experts that it will not be the last. 

Though weather events such as cyclones are a feature in this area, there is no doubt that climate change is having an impact of the frequency and severity of such events. These impact communities which are already fragile and tear apart in an instant homes and livelihoods, ripping roofs from buildings, tearing crops from fields and causing torrential floods and raging rivers. The immediate concern is for lives and the need to ensure safety, shelter, clothing and food, but the longer-term impact on communities such as in Malawi and Mozambique means continued efforts to mitigate climate change. The fight for climate justice is one in which we all need to play our part, to raise our voices to our governments and to listen to the cries of our partners across the world and act accordingly.

The General Secretary of Blantyre Synod CCAP, Rev Dr Billy Gama says: "Climate change affects everyone, there are lessons to be learned and COP26 clarified that we are all doing an injustice to nature, for example deforestation, this allows flooding when rains are heavy or the trees give shelter to the roofs of buildings when wind comes – one problem causes another."

At this point in time, as our partners in IECM and in CCAP seek to support the communities affected, we ask for your prayers and support for them. The Church of Scotland is able to send donations to our partners to help with the relief operations and ongoing work of climate mitigation carried out by our partners.


Carol Finlay is a member of the Faith Action team at the Church of Scotland. She can be contacted on cfinlay@churchofscotland.org.uk