The first Sunday of Advent is December 4, 2007. Hanukkah begins December 14. Deepen your observation of Advent or Hanukkah by connecting these ancient candle-lighting traditions to environmental stewardship with Texas Interfaith Power & Light's study guides, One for Each Night (Hanukkah) and Preparing for a New Light (Advent). Each study guide includes scripture passages, prayers, and information on energy and the environment.
If future generations are to remember us more with gratitude than sorrow, we must achieve more than just the miracles of technology. We must also leave them a glimpse of the world as it was created, not just as it looked when we got through with it.
--Lyndon B. Johnson
It turns out energy efficiency IS a competitive sport!
We told you about ShopIPL.org, our new online energy store that makes EnergyStar products available to your congregation and its members at a discount. Now we want to tell you about a little competition between TXIPL and our good friends at Illinois Interfaith Power & Light.
The winner of this competition is the state that generates the most ShopIPL sales (and thus the most energy efficiency) between now and the end of the year. TXIPL will donate 500 compact fluorescent lightbulbs to the food pantry of choice for whichever congregation racks up the most sales (measured in dollars) from ShopIPL.org.
Tired of hawking breakfast tacos to raise money for mission trips? Sell energy and water conservation products instead through ShopIPL’s congregational fundraiser program. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how.
The North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church helped make environmental stewardship a reality for its member congregations through a new electric aggregation contract with Hudson Energy Systems.
Under the contract, which takes effect January 1, 2008, all participating congregations will be receiving 10 percent of their electricity from Texas renewable energy generators. The contract allows individual churches to request an even higher percentage of green power from Hudson Energy at a small additional cost.
Does your faith community do something special to conserve, protect, or preserve the Texas environment? If so, it’s time for your group to apply for the Texas Environmental Excellence Awards (TEEAs).
What social workers--and we must count environmentalists among such--find difficult to understand is that the trashing of the land is always preceded by a trashing of the soul. Pollution and despoilation are always political, ethical, before they ever become environmental. No one trashes, willfully wastes, or purposively neglects to clean up the immediate world of house and yard and field--no one accepts with dread fatality the present disorder--unless there has already been a prior disordering of the spirit.
Local environmental organization Brazos Environmental Action Network (BEAN) will be launching the Sierra Club Cool Cities campaign in College Station in October to urge the City of College Station to cut local greenhouse gas emissions. A Cool Cities ( http://coolcities.us) informational workshop, open to all concerned residents of the Brazos Valley, will be held on the following date/time:
Sierra Club "Cool Cities" Workshop
With Ann Drumm, Dallas Cool Cities Campaign Coordinator
Saturday, October 13th, 2007
9am to 12pm
J. Ringer Library
We are all so excited about the great article in last week's Wall Street Journal on evangelicals and the environment that focused attention on the Christian Life Commission and CLC Policy Director Suzii Paynter.
At Texas Impact, we've had several calls and emails from folks commenting especially on the article's thoughtful treatment of the issue of the sovereignty of God.
Split Over Global Warming Widens Among Evangelicals
Texas Christians Cite Conflicting Scripture; Staying ‘On Mission’
By ANDREW HIGGINS
I posted this same article on the Texas Impact website but wanted to make sure eveyone sees it so I'm posting it here, too.
Our friend the Reverend Steve Brown of Virginia Interfaith Power & Light forwarded me an op-ed by Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Ross Gelbspan, who is the retired editor of the Boston Globe and an international expert and voice for change on global warming and energy. Ross is a great friend to Texas and Texas Impact who has travelled down here several times to speak to religious and secular audiences on global warming challenges and solutions. His website is http://www.heatisonline.org/
Ross's op-ed is absolutely required reading for faith communities for a number of reasons, the most important of which is the context for hope Ross continues to operate in. As language about global warming from the scientific community gets scarier, we will need different ways of thinking about the future to keep us from shutting down and giving up. Ross Gelbspan's perspective is one that helps me stay grounded in hope for the long term as opposed to grasping for optimism in the short term.
Climate change may destabilize democracies
By Ross Gelbspan
This op-ed first appeared in the Lowell, Massachusett, Sun.
While senators and representatives diddle over the beginnings of authentic climate change legislation, it is depressingly clear that even our best-intentioned leaders don’t really get it.
Bill McKibben's book The Comforting Whirlwind has been a great resource for a lot of folks in the past few years in understanding the connection between faith and the environment through the lens of the whirlwind narrative in the Book of Job. You can get the book through various online outlets including Quakerbooks and Amazon.
This 16-minute video made by Green Campus at Arcata College in Northern
California riffs on the Crocodile Hunter to scour the typical campus
house for energy waste. Enjoy!