Congratulations to our ERUUF congregational community for the ongoing progress toward our Green Sanctuary Accreditation commitment! As some of you may recall, securing Green Sanctuary became a strategic goal in ERUUF’s 2016-2019 Strategic Plan. Since that time, we have made steady progress to include the acceptance of our Green Sanctuary Action Plan by the UUA Green Sanctuary Program in September 2018.
This Fellowship Year, Project Working Groups were formed and active in four areas of congregational life and seven of the 12 projects to include (full project descriptions are available at https://tinyurl.com/yyk63uu7):
- ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE (Collaborative Projects with Community Partners): Focus on Energy and Focus on Food
- RELIGIOUS ED-Youth: Greening Youth RE Curriculum and Youth Engaging in Environmental Justice
- RELIGIOUS ED-Adult & Youth and Environmental & Climate Justice Month
- SUSTAINABLE LIVING: High-Efficiency HVAC Installation & Retrofitting, Project Conserve, Comprehensive Waste Reduction Project, and ERUUF Solar 2021 Project
- WORSHIP & CELEBRATION: Four Earth Justice and Sustainability Services a Year Congregational Common Read
The Earth Justice Action Group (EJ) has been primarily focused on Green Sanctuary Accreditation, a multi-year effort. Working groups are active in seven of the 12 projects in the four areas of congregational life, among them: The Solar 2021 project, waste reduction project, and environmental justice “focus on food” project (a collaboration with the Homeless Action Group in partnership with Families Moving Forward. Seventy-five ERUUFians engaged in the reading and discussion of the UUA Common Read, “Justice on Earth.”
Also, Earth Justice provided worship associates for Indigenous People’s Day, Earth Justice Sunday and Earth Day Sunday, has offered five films and plant-based potlucks as well as a “Voluntary Simplicity.” course (from Northwest Earth Institute). As a result of a working relationship with Religious Education, one of the high school youth was the recipient of a scholarship to attend an Earth and environment related conference in July of 2018.
Finally, the first Earth & Climate Justice Month was a great success, including the congregational Common Read as noted above, team participation in the Drawdown EcoChallenge, the Awakening the Dreamer Symposium, the 3rd Annual Plant-based Eating Week, Sustainable Living Fair, and culminating in a celebratory meal. We continue into the third year of the Green Sanctuary process in 2019-20.