Creation Care for Congregations

 

Presbytery of Baltimore CREATION CARE GROUP

Around the Presbytery: Programs and Projects for Creation Care

 

 

TOWSON

 

Interfaith Collaboration for the Environment

Towson PC’s Earth Corps combined two objectives in one event in April, 2007: planting trees at their Beetree Preserve and collaborating with an Islamic group in interfaith action. Trees have many beneficial effects and this was one of many plantings that have been carried out along Baltimore County’s Gunpowder River. Joining with the folks from Towson were students from Al-Rahmah Sunday School of the Islamic Society of Baltimore (ISB), with parents

 MARYLAND

Battling Exotic Invasive Plants

Maryland Presbyterian Church in Towson sits on four acres of woodland. Like much of our suburban woodlands, over the years this patch has been invaded by all sorts of foreign species that compete with native plants, have no natural enemies here and do not contribute to a healthy ecosystem. MPC for several years has been working to remove these non-native invasive plants through periodic “Ecoparties.” Church members come to worship in their work clothes and after the coffee hour adjourn to the woods to work for several hours pulling up weeds such as garlic mustard, mile-a-minute, wine berry and pachysandra that has invaded from neighbors’ backyards. This is a long-term project, because the seeds of many plants persist in the ground for years and new crops will emerge. However, over the years there are real signs of progress and more native plants are appearing.

 

FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH OF ANNAPOLIS

 

Adult Education Program

As part of the 2009 adult Christian Education curriculum, First Presbyterian of Annapolis chose to offer a seven week series on Green Stewardship: Christian Resources and Responses.  The intent was to tap those in the congregation invested in conservation and care of creation issues, share expertise, and begin the process of formulating a path forward for First Presbyterian – both for better management of our church campus and for providing more educational and outreach opportunities for the congregation.  The class series was well attended and we are integrating some of the energy into Session and Trustee planning as well.

 

Overall goal  To learn about, share, discuss, and evaluate how we become stewards of green/clean prosperity.  How do we balance personal and corporate strategies/tactics; how do we embrace a sustainable prosperity for all, not prosperity for some and poverty for the rest.  How do we build both our personal AND communal value systems to support living green and advocating green.  The series will focus on how we can better:

  • Consume green (what lifestyle choices can we make today; recycling, buying local, sustainable farming, light bulbs,…)
  • Produce/design green (what are some of the new models and visions for the future clean energy technologies; the cradle to cradle model, LEED)
  • Legislate/advocate green (where is Obama going, leveraging avenues like change.gov, standards for green buildings, etc.)
  • Pray green (what does our faith say about care of creation and what avenues do we as a community of faith have for making a difference)

 

We will look at what we can do today, balanced with how we work towards new models for sustainable prosperity, how we can stay sane and engaged when the problems seem overwhelming, what our role is as the Church in this process and how First Presbyterian can participate most effectively.

 

Schedule

1   Introduction: implications of the two creation stories in Genesis


2   Stewardship – Produce / Design Green 1:Steve & Martha Johnson

3   Stewardship – Biblical focus (how we “pray green”): George Fisher,

4   Stewardship – Produce / Design Green  2:  Steve & Martha Johnson

5   Stewardship – Consume Green: What choices do we have day to day?: Panel Discussion with     Susan Hartsfield, green consumer advocate

6   Stewardship – Legislate/advocate Green: Julie Erickson, Baltimore Presbytery advocate

7   Engaging and moving forward: Facilitated discussion

 

More details are available upon request from Debbie Mitchell, debmitchell1026@comcast.net

 

 

 

 

 


 

FIRST OF HOWARD COUNTY

Composting: The Ultimate Recycling Working in cooperation with the Howard County Office of Public Works and the Bureau of Environmental Services, the newly formed Care of Creation Committee at First Presbyterian of Howard County distributed 40 yard compost bins, called Earth Machines, this spring. The compact black, formed plastic, upright Earth Machine Home Composting container holds 80 gallon of vegetable, food and yard waste materials. It has a tight fitting cover to prevent animal disturbance. The black container absorbs heat, accelerating the composting process. The County provided the Earth Machines and delivered them to First Presbyterian. The Care of Creation Committee set up a table and distributed them following services on the four Sundays in April-May.  A class on composting, lead by Master Gardner, Ed Blacka, was given on April 27,2008. Information and tips on composting were printed in the Church Newsletter, Tidings. For further information, please contact Kris Holmes at 410-730-3545 or parishnurse@firstpreshc.org, or Nancy Fayer, at RnFyr@aol.com or 410-750-1479

 

BROWN MEMORIAL PARK AVENUE, BROWN MEMORIAL WOODBROOK, GOVANS and MARYLAND

 

Locally-grown, Organic Produce.

These four congregations have partnered in the community-supported agriculture (CSA) program of with One Straw Farm in Baltimore County. Each week fresh, organic produce is delivered to the churches for pick-up by members who have paid a year’s subscription. In this way the churches promote improved nutrition as well as an approach to food production that is sustainable. One Straw Farm provides an extra share to each church which they describe as a tithe, inviting the church to distribute it to some person in need.

Further information: www.onestrawfarm.com

 

 

BROWN MEMORIAL WOODBROOK

Energy Conservation

 

Brown Memorial has replaced almost all of the regular light bulbs with energy saving ones.  An energy audit was conducted and based on those findings the most "doable" items have been listed on a poster in the narthex for people to sign up to make contributions for the ones they would like to help support monetarily. 

  


 

 

 

 

LET US KNOW WHAT GREEN THINGS ARE HAPPENING IN YOUR CHURCH !

"In the Beginning ...

..God created the heavens and the earth... and God saw that it was very good."

With these words, at the very beginning of our scriptures, the Hebrew story-tellers affirmed the beauty and holiness of the natural world.   We start from there.  [more]

Welcome to our Web

The purpose of this web site is to help individuals and congregations in their ministry of Caring for Creation.  We aim to provide encouragment, information, ideas and resources for use in the wide variety of circumstances that congregations and people encounter in their daily lives.

Resources to Help You

There are many web sites that can help you.  We also have a series of papers on Biblical and other topics related to earth ministry, suggestions of books that will help you develop deeper understanding of creation and creation care, and listings of speakers who are willing to make a presentation at your church and video resources for classes and forums.

Creation Care Ideas for Churches

There are many relatively simple things  a church can do to care for creation and help build a more sustainable future.  Many congregations in the Baltimore Presbytery have developed model programs and actions.