Posted by: mcgurker | August 27, 2008

Simple Steps to becoming a Green Church

As food and energy prices increase and the problems threatened by human induced climate change become a reality for many around the world, we must recognize that the oppression of nature is linked to the suffering of God’s people. We have an opportunity to care for creation and to care for our neighbors through the everyday activities of our Churches. All across the country, congregations are taking this opportunity by becoming green churches. AND YOU CAN TOO!

 

There are many simple steps Churches can take now to become better neighbors and stewards of Creation, Including:

  • Increasing energy efficiency – using CFL light bulbs, turning off appliances when not in use and bumping the thermostat up 2 degrees in the summer and down 2 degrees in the winter
  • Conserving water – indoors by installing Boston Aerators on sinks and outdoors by landscaping with native plants and limiting irrigation
  • Reducing waste – recycling, using durable and reusable dishware, using donated hand towels in bathrooms and kitchens, purchasing recycled paper products for church offices and composting
  • Greening times of fellowship – offering fair trade coffee and local food, participating in a congregation wide environmental service project or starting a community garden
  • Making creation care a core value of the church – celebrating Earth day Sunday, having a bike to Sunday worship, and teaching Sunday School classes on creation for both children and adults, including themes of creation care in to regular worship services

 

The First Church of Christ in Mansfield, CT formed a conservation task force to help them become a green church, and have made caring for Creation a value that permeates all areas of their church life.  When the Rock United Methodist Church built their first structure, they made it as efficient as possible, took the surrounding landscape in to consideration and built a structure to be utilized by the entire community.  The stories of these churches and many others can be found on the web at http://www.nccecojustice.org/EarthDayEvents.html

 

There is no one way for a church to become green. Every congregation has different strengths and is called to meet different needs. But, we are part of a faith tradition that values stories and learns from the struggles and triumphs of our brothers and sisters.  Please consider sharing your congregation’s stories and ideas for becoming a green church with us and all who are working to green their congregations.

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