‘The fields of the poor may produce abundant food, but injustice sweeps it all away ….’ Proverbs 13:23
St Aldhelms is proud to be a Fairtrade church. Fairtrade is one of the simplest, most effective ways that we can show our declaration of support to lift people in the developing world out of poverty. It tells others that we do more than talk about justice – we try to do something about it too, in our everyday lives. Within the church, we are commited to using only Fairtrade tea, coffee and sugar. We have also begun to use Fairtrade Communion wine.
Fairtrade gives us an opportunity to get to know our local community and speakers from our church have given talks and assemblies in local schools and adult interest groups, as well as taking part in the annual London Anglican Fairtrade conference.
“I tell you, if your justice goes no deeper than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of heaven” Matt 5: 20
We support Fairtrade through our prayer life and by dedicating one service a year during Fairtrade Fortnight in which we particularly think about our brothers & sisters across the world who are engaged in growing and producing the things we like to eat drink and wear.
On the first Sunday of each month we have a Fairtrade stall, which is run by our youth church, where you can buy a range of Fairtrade products.
“If you don’t use Fairtrade you are contributing to the poverty of the world” – feedback from a delegate at our annual conference.
Fairtrade is more than just trading: it proves that greater justice in world trade is possible. It highlights the need for change in the rules and practice of conventional trade and shows how a successful business can also put people first. We believe that it is important for the church to make its voice clear in support of these aims.
Fairtrade is both a way for consumers to take individual positive action in solidarity with the poor and a way to introduce people to wider development issues. Buying Fairtrade products should be seen as part, rather than the sum total, of the action needed to address global poverty. That is why many churches involved in the Fairtrade movement over the years have also been campaigning to change international trade rules.