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Archive for the ‘Environment’ Category

Join faith leaders in taking action to advance environmental justice

Contact the EPA
LimerickPowerPlantThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently issued it’s first-ever Climate Power Plan.  The plan would cut carbon pollution from power plants by requiring operators to identify and utilize the best and cheapest ways to reduce pollution, especially from fossil fuels.  While some states have taken aggressive action to curb power plant emissions, the EPA proposal would create new national standards that elevate all states to the same level.  Under the plan, the EPA estimates that by 2030, the country’s power operators would emit 30% less carbon pollution than they did in 2005.
The EPA is requesting comments from the public on the plan.  MCC is joining with other faith groups to encourage people to offer their support for this plan. While it is not all that seek in  advancing creation care and environmental justice, it is a huge step forward.  Sojourners has established a portal to send your support directly to the EPA.  You may also submit public comments through the EPA’s website. Please do so by October 16th.

 

Support the People’s Climate March

Activists have organized the largest-ever gathering of people marching for climate justice, to take place on Sunday, September 21, 2014 in New York City.  This march is being held in advance of the September 23rd UN Summit on Climate Change.  The UN summit seeks to build international agreement ways to reduce global warming.   If you are in the DC area, groups are providing transportation to the march:

 

  • People's Climate March_0The DC Sierra Club is organizing a one-day bus trip from Union Station in Washington, DC
  • Greater Washington Interfaith Power & Light has organized buses and hotel rooms

On Friday, September 19th at the Metropolitan Community Church of New York, MCC Presiding Moderator Rev. Elder Dr. Nancy Wilson will give an address on why LGBTQI people of faith care about climate change, “A Queer Response to Climate Change.” She will be joined by activist and queer performance artist Peterson Toscano.

 

If you cannot participate in person in the march or hear Moderator Wilson’s address, here are actions you can take:

  • Join the Global Climate Chorus around the world on 21 September at 1:00 pm (local time), when faith communities will be making prayerful, sacred sounds outdoors
  • Add a section to the Climate Ribbon
  • Share your thoughts through social media:
    • Facebook comments and pictures should use #climatechorus
    • Twitter tag @ourvoices2015 and hashtag #climatechorus
    • Email your photos or videos to info@ourvoices.net

.  The plan would cut carbon pollution produced by power plants by requiring operators to identify and utilize utilize the best and cheapest ways to reduce pollution, especially from fossil fuels.  While some states have taken aggressive action to curb power plant emissions, the EPA proposal would create new national standards that elevate all states to the same level. Under the plan, the EPA estimates that by 2030, the country’s power operators would emit 30% less carbon pollution than it did in 2005.  .

This action alert was prepared by the Public Policy Team of 

Metropolitan Community Churches and the Global Justice Institute.  

For more information, contact the Public Policy Team at mccadvocacy@mccchurch.net.

MCC Moderator Among Key Faith Leaders to Address Climate Change

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson is the Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC), which has ministries in over 40 countries.  Dr. Wilson was part of the first LGBT faith delegation to meet with U.S. White House staff in 1979, and she served as a member of President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

As the U.S. government rolled out its historic report on global climate change, it was announced that the Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches, the Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, would be part of a team of twenty-one top ecumenical and interfaith leaders to spearhead an effort to mobilize religious communities to address environmental concerns and to provide “how to” guidance and an extensive array of free resources to their networks.

The team launched Blessed Tomorrow (http://www.blessedtomorrow.org) on 7 May 2014, which brings together some of the United States’ preeminent religious leaders from the Evangelical, Muslim, Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant faiths who are personally dedicated to leading by example on stewardship within their organizations. This historic interfaith coalition of religious leaders will lead their faith communities to work toward climate solutions in their congregations, communities, and homes. MCC will continue to work globally on these issues that affect us all.

“I believe it is time that we look at our actions. God’s love will never change, but we have an eternal mandate to be in relationship to our natural environment and this paradise we call Earth,” said the Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson. “We hold the future of our children in our hands and can come together to bring in an era of cooperation never seen in the history of humankind to embody a blessed tomorrow.”

Metropolitan Community Churches was founded in 1968 and made history as the first church to perform same-gender marriages,” said Dr. Wilson. “MCC is known as ‘The Human Rights Church’ internationally and works worldwide to challenge discrimination based on race, gender, class, and sexual orientation. Many MCC congregations around the globe are supporting a sustainable climate through their practices. The Blessed Tomorrow partnership will provide a rich interaction across lines of faith and tradition that will help everyone grow.”

Blessed Tomorrow emerged out of EcoAmerica MomentUs efforts to connect with business, health, faith, and other constituencies with mutually beneficial strategies to reduce the effects of climate change. Faith communities will expand the use of climate change solutions that align with their faith tradition and values. Blessed Tomorrow provides simple, proven resources faith leaders can use right away to empower their members and communities.

Central to this initiative is helping congregations create a Path to Positive plan, which will provide free resources to guide them to be better stewards of God’s creation, for the sake of the most vulnerable populations and future generations. Each congregation or ministry is encouraged and empowered to create their own Path to Positive: http://blessedtomorrow.org/path-to-positive. (Click on “Inspire Others” for resources.)

Founded in 1968, Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) has been at the vanguard of civil and human rights movements by addressing issues of race, gender, sexual orientation, economics, climate change, aging, and global human rights. MCC was the first to perform same-gender marriages and has been on the forefront of the struggle towards marriage equality in the U.S. and other countries worldwide.

Earth Day 2014

EarthDay2014CELEBRATE THE EARTH 
EARTH DAY OBSERVANCE 
April 22, 2014

 

The first Earth Day was observed in 1970, marking the first occasion when millions of Americans united to demonstrate their concern for the deteriorating state of the environment.  More than forty years later, we join many others from all around the world in celebrating and advocating on behalf of the Earth. The importance of protecting the Earth and her increasingly scarce resources and fragile environment has become ever more apparent as we observe that the Earth’s climate has been warming and that the exploitation of the Earth for fossil fuels in the form of oil, coal, and natural gas has not waned.  In its most recent report last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) found that “the atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has risen, and the concentration of greenhouse

gases have increased.”  Further, the IPCC concludes that the warming trend is unequivocal, reporting that “each of the last three decades have been successively warmer at the Earth’s surface than any preceding decade since 1850.”  Now more than ever, citizens and policymakers need to act to make possible a sustainable future for generations to come.

 

In the face of the reality of rapid ecological crises and degradation, we believe that as people of faith we are called to tend to God’s good creation, seek justice for the vulnerable and oppressed among us, and be good stewards of the bounty and beauty of the Earth.

 

This year, the focus for Earth Day is on Green Cities, an effort to encourage lawmakers, businesses, and citizens to make sustainable investments in clean energy and advocate for public policies that promote energy efficiency and limit greenhouse gas emissions.  The IPCC has concluded that efforts to eradicate poverty and achieve sustainable development and equity can be improved by limiting the effects of climate change.  The Moderator’s Public Policy Team agrees and calls on our elected officials and concerned people of faith to advocate for policies and practices that help us create a healthier environment for a sustainable future for all.

 

On Earth Day, April 22, we can all do our part to act as good stewards and advocates for the environment, ensuring that later generations will be able to benefit from all the beauty and bounties of the Earth.  You can reaffirm your commitment to protecting the environment by volunteering, letting your representatives know that you support sound environmental policies, or making a small lifestyle change to reduce any negative impact on the environment.  If everyone chooses to do something small, together, we can create a better world for future generations.

 

To help you further reflect on God’s earth as gift, we are please to share the following resources:

This statement was prepared by the Public Policy Team of 

Metropolitan Community Churches/The Global Justice Institute, Rev. Pat Bumgardner, Chair.

For more information, contact the Public Policy Team at rmccadvocacy@mccchurch.net.