The National Caretakers of God’s Creation Conference has moved this year from Ohio to the DC suburbs so that members of Caretakers can participate in the National Climate Justice March on the US Capital Mall on April 29th. The Caretakers conference is on April 28th and includes inspiring worship, keynote speakers and workshops to help with work on climate justice and developing greener churches. The conference will be a day of inspiration, education and preparation. It begins with worship, including a message of hope brought by United Methodist Bishop C. Joseph Sprague, will include major addresses by Rev. Fletcher Harper, Rev. Jenny Phillips, and will conclude with worship and communion with sermons by Bill McKibben and Michelle Roberts. To learn more and see a specific agenda, click here.
The General Board of Church and Society (GBCS) is one of four international general program boards of The United Methodist Church. They are defined by its five areas of ministry: Public Witness, Advocacy Administration, Ministry of Resourcing Congregational Life, United Nations Ministry, and Communications. Their website contains ways to get connected, topics to explore, and ways to take action. To access their website click here.
The United Methodist Women is the largest denominational faith organization for women. They have approximately 800,000 members whose mission is to protect spiritual growth, develop leaders, and advocate for justice. One of their main principles includes promoting economic and environmental stewardship and sustainability. In addition, The United Methodist Women’s national office has made climate justice one if its four social justice priorities. More specifically, they focus on climate change affecting people differently. Their main claim is that climate change is not an equal opportunity phenomenon. This claim is what led to The United Methodist Women establishing The Women’s Carbon Fund.
The Women’s Carbon Fund is the first organization started by a women’s group that is dedicated to carbon issues. It focuses on women and children, primarily because they make up 70% of the world’s poor, according to unitedmethodistwomen.org. Their goals are to take into account gender roles and to incorporate women’s voices because they believe policy makers fail to do so. This organization supports women-led projects that lower CO2 emissions, communities whose lives have been affected by climate change, and climate and energy advocacy initiatives led by women for women.
In order to continue supporting and educating, The United Methodist Women have a phenomenal website. Their website includes tools to aid in sustainable living and advocacy in a theological way, a carbon footprint calculator, articles on climate justice, and a simulation experience to better understand environmentally downgraded communities. Their focus on environmental justice stems from their theological belief from the United Methodist Book of Discipline, “All creation is the Lord’s, and we are responsible for the ways in which we use and abuse it. Water, air, soil, minerals, energy resources, plants, animal life, and space are to be valued and conserved because they are God’s creation and not solely because they are useful to human beings. God has granted us stewardship of creation. We should meet these stewardship duties through acts of loving care and respect (Social Principles, 160).”
To read more or explore their website, click here.
The Bishops of the United Methodist Church released a statement entitled: God’s Renewed Creation: Call to Hope and Action.
In this statement, the Bishops urged people to look at how they see themselves as a part of creation, and adjust it so they stop harming the environment. People need to stop looking out for only themselves, and take on the roles of being stewards for the planet if there is any hope of redeeming earth from destruction. To read the full letter, click here.
To check out how the United Methodist Church is living out this statement, check out this website.