OSJ Creation Care Update | March 29, 2017
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CWP Congregational Leaders Meet to Share Updates and Ideas

There are currently 15 congregations in Michigan with active Climate Witness Project teams! On Jan. 25, Woodlawn CRC in Grand Rapids hosted a meeting of the leaders of 12 of these teams, along with visitors from several interested congregations, to share ideas and experiences. The participants reviewed what has already been accomplished and what they hope do in the future within the framework of the four CWP pillars: energy stewardship, worship, education, and advocacy.

Great things have been happening in these CWP congregations. Many of them have taken advantage of free assessment/lighting upgrades offered by Consumers Energy. Woodlawn CRC launched a film series. Church of the Servant CRC in Grand Rapids pursued (and eventually achieved) ENERGY STAR Certification. Alger Park CRC in Grand Rapids offered a three-part adult education series on climate change. Several congregations shared their experiences working with Plaster Creek Stewards to install bioswales and rain gardens with native plantings. Other congregations shared their experiences with recycling, composting, managing community gardens, partnering with other organizations like the Sierra Club, the Citizens’ Climate Lobby, and a host of other projects. It was both informative and inspiring to hear about all the good work being accomplished by CWP teams!

The sharing was so beneficial, in fact, that we decided to continue to meet on a quarterly basis. Our next meeting will be at Calvin CRC in Grand Rapids on April 17 at 7 p.m. Please attend if you are curious about how congregations are addressing climate change or if your congregation/organization is interested in becoming involved in the Climate Witness Project.

Solar Panels Highlight Campus Chapel’s Creation Care

The Campus Chapel in Ann Arbor, Mich. (a CWP congregation), has installed solar panels to promote the community’s goal of working toward better energy efficiency and reducing its carbon footprint. Their work was recently highlighted in The Banner. Read the story here.

Still Time to Register for Evangelical Climate Advocacy Days!

We're heading to Washington, D.C., for the People's Climate March on Saturday, Apr. 29, followed by advocacy training on Sunday and legislative meetings on Monday. Many CWP partners are attending, and we'd love to have you come along! Visit the event page for details.

CRC Grants Help to 'Ignite' Red Mesa Churches

With the help of funding from the CRC Foundation’s Ignite funding program and the Climate Witness Project, more than a dozen churches in Classis Red Mesa have been able to install energy-efficient lighting and take other steps to save money and protect the environment. Rick Kruis, CWP regional organizer for Classis Red Mesa, said, “This project opened a lot of doors in Red Mesa and helped connect me with CRC church leaders throughout the classis and to meet with church councils to explain what the Climate Witness Project is all about.” Read more about the project in CRC News.

House Republicans Introduce Climate Change Resolution

A group of House Republicans recently introduced a resolution calling on the House of Representatives to find economically viable solutions to the risks posed by climate change. Taking action on climate change requires moving beyond partisanship. All voices are needed at the table to create solutions that faithfully steward our resources and protect vulnerable communities most affected by climate change. The new resolution is a welcome step in this direction. Call Representatives Stefanik, Curbelo, and Costello today to thank them for their work on this new resolution!

Project Small Creatures at Trinity CRC

Trinity CRC in Grandville, Mich. is located near the mouth of Rush Creek, where it empties into the Grand River. Most of Rush Creek has been channelized and is used primarily as a drain for snow melt and rain water in southeastern Ottawa and southwestern Kent counties. Read about the creation care work Trinity CRC has done along a section of Rush Creek, including macroinvertebrate identification.

CWP Facebook Page: Like and Invite!

Did you know the Climate Witness Project has a Facebook page? And it’s just for you! We share updates from CWP churches, news, advocacy opportunities, and more. Help us spread the word by completing these steps:

1.  Visit the page.
2.  'Like the page.
3.  Invite your friends to like the page (click ‘Invite friends to like this page’ on the right sidebar).

Protect the Clean Power Plan

Yesterday, the Trump Administration signed an executive order that instructs the EPA to begin rolling back the Clean Power Plan. Should the Clean Power Plan be struck down, it could seriously threaten the durability of the Paris Agreement and the credibility of the United States moving forward. We all depend on creation for our livelihood. The effects of a changing climate are felt most intensely by the vulnerable among us. As Christians, we believe that speaking out on behalf of God’s creation and for all who depend on it for survival makes the church a place of lived theology.

Contact your member of Congress today in support of the Clean Power Plan, asking them to support policies that align with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

Is the Climate Witness Project important to you?

We can’t do it without you. Help continue this important work.