“The theme was powerful and easy to promote — fighting climate change for the sake of our children and future generations. Communities of faith and spiritual practice were very receptive. Resources from the kit were all very helpful.” Tennessee-Western Kentucky Conference, United Methodist Church
Faith Climate Action Week 2022 was a big success with 1400 congregations reaching half a million individuals with climate change awareness through sermons, worship services, film discussions, and local climate action. This year’s theme was Sacred Trust: Our Children’s Right to a Livable Future. We invited congregations to examine our responsibility to safeguard our Earth for future generations, and how our faiths call us to respond with bold and just solutions to climate change.
475 congregations screened the featured film YOUTH v GOV to a total of approximately 13,000 people and held discussions. IPL also offered a webinar with the filmmaker and two young people of faith from the film about how their faith motivates them to take action.
Here are a few examples of the actions that congregations took during the week:
Peninsula Sinai Cong, Foster City, California – We involved a group of teens by showing them the movie and then having them participate in a dialogue about the movie and their reactions to it. We’re hoping to continue to keep them involved in sharing their feelings and attitudes about the reality of Climate Change.
Sisters of St. Francis in Oldenburg, Indiana – provided a Plant based meal on Earth Day for 140 sisters who are dedicated to future generations, so that they may have a liveable future. We planted an oak tree for future generations. Our Sisters are an average age of 79 yrs.old and are paying it forward.
Loomis Basin Congregational United Church of Christ in Loomis, California – held a blessing for our children during worship.
Tennessee Interfaith Power & Light – Climate Rally in Clarksville, TN coordinated with ecumenical speakers and teens reciting Indigenous Prayer for Earth. And an ecumenical Prayer Service at St. Henry Church representing multiple faith and spiritual traditions. See their inspiring promotional video below.
Interfaith Alliance in Irving, Texas – We had an Earth Day event at a local park that has a butterfly garden and our Interfaith Alliance members shared prayers for Earth from various faith traditions. Children and families were invited. Children shared poems for Earth , a teen shared a poem she wrote specially for this day . We then did hands on activities like making bird feeders using pine cones, learning how to recycle and compost , how to make bee hives for native bees .
La Mesa Presbyterian Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico – Two talks on Earth Day at Sunday service – one of legislative successes in NM legislature, one of climate actions at the church. After the service some 10 exhibits in the social hall – posters, how to be involved with our Environmental Stewardship Committee, worm farms, green bucket, recycling.
Thank you for Youth v Gov! It was well-attended and spurned lots of discussion and appreciation of the issues. We have to move to more action!
Grace Congregational Church in Manitowoc, Wisconsin – Our Pastor’s sermon was totally on topic with environmental awareness and protection as were all the prayers, hymns and special music and even the communion service was dedicated to Earth Day.
United Methodist Church of Berea, Ohio – Our church held a Creation Justice Fair with speakers, an interactive mural, a children’s station, a rain barrel workshop, and 18 organizations hosting tables in Wesley Hall.
Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota – We had children and youth lead the Earth Sunday adult form and challenge our leaders to act in the way Greta Thunberg confronts those with power. We learned and used an Earth Keeping Liturgy and prayers for a whole month of Care of the Earth worship services. The commitment to sign the IPL pledge with climate and mind and we ended the month we taking direct action and writing letters and contacting our Democratically elected leaders
Southport Trinity UMC, Southport, North Carolina – Our Creation Care Team had a Creation care Sunday on April 24th, just after Earth day, in all 3 services with earth/climate prayers. Singing with teenagers, an altar with earth and ocean friendly items.Our service was videoed in facebook. A a 2-3 min video on “Why Christians should care about the climate” And a good pastor sermon on God’s Creation and climate and why we should be good Stewards/caretakers . Our team all read the scriptures related to earth and seas. We also had a booth at Naturefest on April 31st near Arbor Day on Creation Care , Climate, and reducing plastic. Gave out bamboo toothbrushes and some boxed water as well as sustainable information. Made connections with other Earth friendly exhibitors. We have given out LED bulbs to 4 habitat houses and one that our church helped build finished this week!
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Bedford MA – We used the Earth Day Climate Prayer at a noontime prayer service on the 22nd. Other prayers and litanies were written and used on Earth Sunday, when we had both a sermon and a lay talk on the intersectionality of all injustice with climate injustice and the need to each one of us to take action as God leads. Film screening was a joint program of two congregations, with participation from a third.