Hull Minster has been awarded £15,720 to explore the relationship between science and faith through the church engagement programme Scientists in Congregations, which is run by Equipping Christian Leadership in an Age of Science (ECLAS).

Hull Minster is one of 22 churches and organisations in England and Wales to receive grants totalling £400,000, to be used over the next 18 months on a creative, public-facing project.

The project, to take place from 2nd – 8th August 2021, is a seven day, interactive, multi-platform programme with activities for all ages. Using as a starting point the question, “Why should we care for our Earth?”, and following the biblical account of the Creation, the Minster will host a series of activities including online lectures, craft activities and in-person activities. They will be joined by The Deep on Friday 6th August to host a “Turtley Awesome” experience in the Minster, and the project will culminate with a Family Celebration at the Minster on Sunday 8th August, featuring a trip around the solar system.

The week of events will then link with the Gaia exhibition, a spectacular installation by the artist Luke Jerram, which will be hosted jointly by Hull Minster and the Hull Freedom Festival from August 20. It is hoped that the resources generated by the science and faith project will then be available for local schools, churches and community organisations

Project Co-Director, Rachel Miller, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded the Scientists in Congregations funding this year. The project promises to be an exciting event with activities suitable for all ages, and we are especially pleased that it will showcase the work of younger scientists within the Minster community."

Scientists in Congregations is a programme run by the research project Equipping Christian Leadership in an Age of Science (ECLAS). The ECLAS project is led from St John’s College, Durham University in partnership with the University of York and the Church of England. Its directors include the Revd Prof David Wilkinson and physicist Prof Tom McLeish. ECLAS and the Scientists in Congregations grants are funded by the Templeton Religion Trust. ECLAS has distributed £665,000 to over 70 churches through its Scientists in Congregations programme since 2014.

The Revd Prof David Wilkinson, Project Director of ECLAS and Principal of St John’s College, said: “We are delighted to be working with churches on such promising projects, and look forward to seeing how congregations and the communities they serve engage with science and faith in fresh and exciting ways. We are proud to offer additional funding for follow-on projects for the first time this year, which will help churches reach even more people with the message that science is a gift from God.”

Bishop Frank White who works in the Community Engagement Team in Hull Minster said; "We hope to dispel a modern day myth that faith and science are opposed to each other. They are two sides of the same coin, celebrations of the wonderful world God has given us to inhabit and for which we are to care with love".