Happy World Bee Day 2021!
Today we are delighting in the beauty and wonder of these little hard-working pollinators in helping God’s creation flourish.
Did you know we have a stunning diversity of around 2,000 species of native bees in Australia? From the world's smallest, Quasihesma bees from far northern Australia, to one of the most striking in the metallic green Carpenter Bees found across eastern QLD and NSW and Kangaroo Island, SA.
Today as we celebrate we also grieve. Our native bee populations, and honey bees worldwide, face serious threats with continued habitat loss, pesticide use and climate change. The protection and health of honey bees and other pollinators is crucial to thriving ecosystems, maintaining precious biodiversity and ensuring the effective pollination of diverse food crops.
As we see the diversity, health and flourishing of God’s beautiful creation being threatened and lost we are compelled to take action. For many of us pursuing Jesus and justice, loving God’s creation means rolling up our sleeves and getting into the good (and sometimes messy) work of caring, nurturing and protecting our precious native environments. One community who have been hard at this good work is Terrigal Uniting Church who set up their first native bee hive in 2015. Inspired by their love for the natural bush surrounding their church property on Darkinjung Country, and driven by their desire to tread more lightly on the planet, senior minister Rev Richard Harris and members of his congregation decided to purchase a hive to support local bee populations. Caring for God’s creation by helping protect and nurture an environment where native bees could thrive has also helped create a wonderful way to build connections with their local community. As the colony grew, Terrigal Uniting was able to gift hives (and occasionally honey) to schools, churches and other community groups, inviting them into learning how to care for, protect and connect with God’s beautiful creation around them.
Assistant Minister of Paddington Anglican and ecological ethicist Dr Byron Smith was one of the first to inherit a hive from Terrigal Uniting. Since then, he and his family have loved the challenge and joy of turning their inner-city church garden into a bee-friendly haven and seeing their native stingless bees thrive. Doing this good work of getting out into the garden and caring for God’s creation can also be a spiritual discipline. As Byron explains, “It’s been beekeeping and worm farming that I go back to as deliberate disciplines to train me to love the creation more”.
Join us today as we celebrate our bees and seek ways we can be loving, protecting and caring for God’s creation more.
SHARE celebrate by sharing your photos of bees, or your own beehives, with us on social media @CommonGraceAus #WorldBeeDay #WorldBeeDayAustralia #WorldBeeDay2021 #SaveTheBees #BeeFriendly
TAKE ACTION Join with Common Grace in calling for urgent action on climate change in these lands now called Australia. Find out how your voice can make a difference.
LEARN MORE about how planting bee friendly flowers in your garden, supporting slow agriculture or even becoming a beekeeper of a hive in your backyard, rooftop or balcony can help protect and support the flourishing of our native bees.
CELEBRATE WITH CHILDREN How do Bees Make Honey? ABC Kids Listen podcast, Imagine This, helps kids explore the fascinating world of bees and learn how wing power and a little bit of bee spit (!!) helps turn nectar into all that delicious, sticky honey!