Creation Care Summit | Group Report (Responses)
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TimestampConversation Round
Group Number / Location:
GROUP TOPICCONVERSATION SUMMARY (100 words or less)NOTES (Optional: Record additional notes, thoughts, etc.)Participant Names
7/27/2018 13:01:24
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
JCleaning and Health/Beauty productsThe amount of plastic in our water is unbelievable. The micro fibers are in our daily products. Therefore it is very important to read the tags of all of our products. Some products have been found to disrupt the endocrine system. Catherine, Naomi, Samantha and Alma
7/27/2018 13:13:25
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
IHow can institutions of higher learning and congregations support one another on ecological responsibilityKey action step: develop a transformative curriculum along the lines of Disciple Bible Studies that develops ecological literacy, ethics, actions, etc, engaging biblical, theological, mutual accountability, bioregional knowledge, environmental justice issues. Will need to draw from theological schools, key educators at all levels of our colleges and universities, clergy, laity, Earthkeepers, etc. Each week would have elements of local research and action items in addition to reading, consuming online content etc. We will be convening another conversation in Round 3.Also discussed: educational gardens, service learning, student clubs, camps and employment, teaching opportunities for students interested in community activism, directories of churches doing environmental work (for schools to know who locally is doing this) and directories of schools doing environmental work (like a speaker's bureau). Raised the question of "How to raise up a generation of UM's with ecological literacy and skills for the necessary transition. Then we began focusing on the transformative curriculum.Mark Davies; Bob Downs, Robin Murray, Becky Copeland, Dan Joranko, Timothy Eberhart, Jonathan Brake, Jessi Persson, Ruth Ann Marks, Valentine Cadieu
7/27/2018 13:16:45
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
FWhat are the things to know about starting a community solar project, esp. Coop vs. Private ownership.Devon Cupery from MNIPL gave resources for us to hook up with. has diagrams of locations where there are community solar arrays. One of MNIPL goals is to help churches understand and implement solar along with having financial models available. Need an event where churches have gone solar to discuss their process. Emily Minge is solar outreach coordinator at MNIPL. Frustrations with process and needs to be streamlined. Also, discussed DAVE, Jeanne, Barb, Sotico, Devon, Cheryl
7/27/2018 13:18:18
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
DYes and moreThe conversation divided. Two take always. Yes, informally organize a petition network. Also, discussed the next great thing after the Malaria initiative. The next thing we should all work as the for is water.Still need guidance on the first petition.Anna-Lisa of Lacrosse, Marcus of Alabama, Beth of Decatur, Idelle of Minnesota, Susan Mullins
7/27/2018 13:19:33
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
AWhat is the role of a faith-based community organizing in the work of climate justiceGreat conversation about community organizing and the churchCarol proposed - involved with faith based group in Omaha that helped stop coal based power plant

New City Church based on community organizing - one on ones are key part of developing church; Jesus was a great community organizer, so was John Wesley

Community based organizing - one on ones, small house parties, long term model that needs to be tended; gets us beyond our opinions, needs and issues bubble up from bottom; start with small group, then the research begins to understand the issues and policy that's when the policy makers take the group seriously; accountability sessions - nonpartisan, all elected officials are invited and asked in front of a large community group to commit.

Suggestion that more congregations should learn about and explore the tool of community organizing. There can be consequences for challenging power makers.

Small congregations are even struggling to start and maintain small groups. One on ones. Come from a tiny elderly congregation. Want to bring together to talk about gardening, canning bring out the wisdom of the seniors in the congregation.

Living in a small town is a challenge. Help individuals identify their concerns and identify the goal, then explore the policy change that is needed. Every community has a city/township board, what are the recycling options in our community, etc.

CURE - Communities United for Rochester Empowerment (Rochester MN)

What is politically feasible. Succeed at something small, builds success for other changes. Turn to funders, grant makers. Worked at Interfaith nonprofit, Faith in Public Life.

Talking about 13 ways of sustainability (UMW)

MNIPL exploring how to do congregational organizing; how to organize within an institution? connections and building relationships; OnBeing episode about community organizing as relationship building; going beyond the personal to the systemic -- systems change!

MNIPL three-pronged approach: personal/practical, systems, and spiritual changes

Power People's campaign - helped organized MN campaign, 6 weeks of direct action, hard work. Glad to hear witness around room for policy advocacy. But ready to flip tables. Broad call also requires agitation. Some of it is calling ourselves to accountability and repentance. Within an organization that requires accountability. How to build power within that structure that also needs to be called to repentance. What is the repentance and repair that need to happen before there can be healing?

Organizing framework has a lot to offer for that. How to build within an institution that doesn't practice. Church and Society - great they are next to capitol. Director of Grassroots organizing?

Would like to see the church (Higher Ed, Church and Society, etc) to teach community organizing skills. Things like MNIPL's Be the Spark Movement building.

Helping pastors, leaders, Christian Educators to have foundation to understand power and power sharing. Challenging to church leaders that they might challenge their big donors, makes them reluctant to take this on.

Covenant Discipleship - works of mercy/acts of compassion vrs acts of justice. Challenge to get folks to understand difference especially in church leadership. Continuing in charity model instead of actually challenging systems. Provisional Deacon - need to develop a discipleship system, but don't include justice in that conversation which needs to be a critical part of discipleship.

Part of that problem - most people in US UMC are privileged white people. Why would we want to challenge the system that we benefit from. Gift inventory doesn't gifts of organization.

What are the skills and competences we need to do system change? As people of faith - we are going on to perfection

We need a balance -- to own our complicity and live in grace. Guilt doesn't always work. But we sometimes talk too quickly, too much about grace.

Skills we need are community organizing - wheel that has been invented. Can develop leadership training models in annual conferences that provides community organizing training across affinity groups like EarthKeepers, Racial Reconciliation, Native American Ministries, Reconciling Movement, Homelessness, etc.

Give laity theological framing that gives vision of wholeness, tradition, language

Internal transformation (God working in us and through us) to be part of external transformation of the world. (New City Church hexagon). Inward and outward and back inward. Small group ministry is link between internal and outward. Need to be connected. Can get caught up in the tactics/strategies/organizing work - forget why which is the internal work. Why is integral to the how!!

Don't run into a ends/means reversal problem by having that loop.

With regards to our UMC mission -
need to add a willingness to being transformed BY the world...
Deep listening

Came from a conversation about social capital/cultural assets, institutional inertia. Local church can be very provisional.

Don't know what else is going on in the world. Role of laity that has connections to the world, experts in the world. How to give laity courage and skills to work in their context (business, small town, government, nonprofit, etc).

Love the idea of the art dialogue model. What are our common values.

Carol Windrum (Omaha NE), Joshua Simms (ELI intern at Hamline church - originally from DC), Dana Neuhauser (Deacon at New City Church Mpls), Alison Schwarz (ElI intern in Rochester, student in Eau Claire), Joan Bignell (Kellogg UMC MN), Cathy Velasquez Eberhart (Prospect Park UMC, St. Paul, MN), Bill Konrardy (Mpls, Lake Harriet UMC)
7/27/2018 13:20:39
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
GDealing with Polarization: How di we talk with Conservatives?One idea is to hold events at church - public events that partner with other organizations. Hold a bipartisan event on environmental issues. When talking to someone with whom you disagree, prepare, practice what you want to say ahead of time. Asking questions such as "Why?" or "How?" is not always helpful. Pehaps not use the word "Climate change." Think of Obama's S. Africa speech. Smaller, focused projects can be successful: pollinator project, 4H. Try to be less threatening...chip awayEileen Sieger, Colleen Werdien, Wally, Josh Marzahn, Ruth Ann Marks and others
7/27/2018 13:24:43
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
BHow do we engage healing and advocacy as a UM movement- change structures that oppress and build healingHow do we invite others to come along? Overcoming the institutional fear of losing people. Reclaim our prophetic role. Making use of existing structures to educate and equip, what tools do we already have and what do we need. What is our Wesleyan DNA and what are the non-negotiables. How do we reclaim Jesus' vision of intersectionality/justice. Non-hierarchical, organic connections between organizations i.e. the fungus model. Idelle, Elizabeth, Michael, Pat, Allison, Kevin, Sarah, Debi, Sara Jane
7/27/2018 13:25:36
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
DOrganizing and choosing a topic on Envr Protection as a National Voice of UMCHow do we intentionally grow our environmental justice work? Is it a social media campaign that lifts up one topic or campaign each month and asks United Methodists to support it? Is it a big campaign that is denomination-wide like Imagine no Malaria?Water issues seem to be a topic that everyone can relate to... There can be too much (flood) not enough (drought) not potable (contamination), etc. Through water we can make connections between the environment and racism.Anna-Lisa Hunter, Beth Bond, Marcus Briggs-Cloud, Susan Mullin
7/27/2018 13:26:30
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
KIs Social Capital an Obstacle or a ToolS.C. is important for solving Tragedies of the Commons problem. Social Capital is an entry into a conversation. Cultural Change is the issue. It is done in small steps and is slow. Distinguish between relationships, which people may be afraid to destroy, and Social Capital. We need strategies for building more social capital, but very efficiently because time is short.Listening: People are open to change when they feel there perspective is being heard.
"The Art of Neighboring" book resource.
Every interaction is an opportunity to effect social change.
Affirm the Wesleyan imperative to be a politician.?
Trudy Dunham, Bill Konrady, Gary Gottrfied, Lynne Hunter, Bill Middlecamp*
7/27/2018 13:40:16
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
DHow we honor, lift, support the call of lay people who resonate with Creation CareFew if anyone is looking at these issues, no identified resources to help church folks deal with this, UMCOR resources on practical (physical) emergency preparednessGrief freezes us, fear paralyzes - we need to move through these in order to reach wholeness, if not healing. Notice how we talk - we need to be able to express emotions when we talk about these terrible and fearful things, not continue sterile, academic conversations. This is emotional stuff and we should be able to express emotions. We need to "cry foul" on speakers who make this all abstract, who fail to honor "life." When talking with people who don't believe in climate change, connect to extreme weather. We have been here before - during the great depression, for example. What lessons did we learn at that time? For people who can't or won't talk, art can be a way to bring this forward. UMCOR has preparedness training, and the Red Cross works with churches as partners. Churches can be a place that engages parents in learning how to help their children with extreme climate events. Mr. Roger's said - "Look for the helpers. They are always there." Art produced in Katrina museum of glass bottles floating in the air (water), some with hands coming down from them and some with the names of the dead. Even though the government abandoned them, there were still helpers. When can we prepare UM folks? Possibly at the yearly UMW spiritual growth seminar Leslie MacKenzie, note taker
7/27/2018 13:39:39
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
HHow do we best fellowship in a way that leads to collective action?In faith and trust, tying people’s values and sense of self to the action. Different places (and individuals) require different approaches. Compelling stories can stir people to action. Small wins (accomplishments) draw others in.University churches seem to foster stronger green teams. Locating local partners can fellowship with full community and inspire those within the church.Michael Black, Kevin Hein
7/27/2018 13:54:55
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
CWorship - LiturgyThere are many resources - scattered - found one by one, Sunday by Sunday. There is a hunger for a collection of liturgies, prayers, songs/anthems, and hymns (as well as reframed sacramental understanding) for living now on this earth in relationship with Creation other than dominance. Big Dream: Hold a retreat to create resources – “EarthKeepers Collection” a place to start.
Sources exist and often seem far flung.
The Bible
Seasons of Creation
Earth Mass, by Paul Winter
Richard Rohr (Dance of the Trinity, for example)
Sue(?) Zabel, Washington, decades ago: images of God outside traditional
The Fellowship of United Methodist for Music and Worship Arts
The hymnal and alternative lyrics for UMC (UCC for example; original)

Worship curators often work in isolation, craving solid, locatable resources.
SHARE, support, find each other, become resource

EVERY Sunday we need (for the world in which we live):
NOT just Earth day anymore
Reinvigoration of rituals/myths/even (perhaps especially) sacraments:
Example: shift from punitive atonement to celebration of at-one-ment in Communion
(Karen Armstrong – when the myth no longer applies, religion diminishes)

Moving to relationship other than dominance.
Asymmetry in a symmetrical tradition.

Desire mission statements for worship: What are we doing, what is our purpose, in worship. Church by church. And shared as a larger church?
Worship influences consciousness, informs and inspires.
We literally put words in people’s mouths – thus thoughts in their minds.
Serious, critical work.
(cross pollination) Worship is a container for the experience of grief –
that leads to hope

Encourage each other to take incarnation seriously, to claim theologies of relationship as faithful to the Way of Jesus.
Can we call earth Mother? St. Francis did so

Meet people where they are with what is familiar...and move it forward with respectful attention to what is adapted.

Permissions, rights, etc. may be somewhat of a barrier for sharing. Learn how to do it well and without harm.

We were agrarian.
We’ve lost some consciousness in evolution of culture...
Scripture, Culture, Agriculture, Ellen Davis
Many of our churches are small rural.
(There is a rural life Sunday in our Book of Worship!)
Reconnect so the knowledge of our relationship as farmers/herders isn’t lost.
Come alongside and then move forward.

Going outside traditional practices.
Framing is important and makes new practices gently possible

Make question about how and why we change PART of worship, rather than sidebars or mysterious things “the pastor does.”
Small changes prompt conversation. Ex: “Christ will come again and again...”

Worship as CURATION

Retreat to create resources – “EarthKeepers Collection”
A MN Conf. Big Idea

Workshop in Rochester in October, hope for a worship workshop.
Cooper Wiggen
Chris Kliesen Wehrman
Denise Honeycutt
Erik Rasmussen
Nancy Victoren-Vangerud
Jo Flesner
Krista Speiler
7/27/2018 14:28:35
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
BAs we move further into extreme climate change, how will our churches lead and support our community in crisis?UMCOR is a valuable resource. Networking with other churches, government agencies, and neighborhoods to be ready before a disaster or crisis hits.
- UMCOR long-term follow up for physical & mental health.

- Conference-directed Disaster response plans developed at local church level: for families, congregations, communities (New York Annual Conference Disaster Relief as all churches to develop a plan).

- Clusters of churches (missional networks) can develop food & water supplies, logistical plans, etc. in conjunction with local first-responders and networks to be ready in advance for potential crises (know your local area for greatest needs - i.e. flood, tornado, hurricane, fire, etc.)

- Learn to communicate better about what items are Actually Needed, so that trash and junk can be limited from destination sites.

- Develop space in local churches for temporary shelter - showers, bedding, etc.

- Get to know everyone in the neighborhood - so we know whom to check on. Do this at the block-club level. Use the National Night Out program. Signs for the window that say "OK" or "Need Help" to display during a disaster.

- Interfaith collaboration with town/county to know where resources are available when needed.

- Prepare ourselves to respond with spiritual care, offer vigils, special worship services, counseling, etc.
Allison Schwartz, Erik Rasmussen, Jonathan Brake, Leslie MacKenzie, Sotico Pagulayan, Jill Middlecamp
7/27/2018 14:39:33
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
DHow do we lift and support lay people who are called to work on Creation CareLaity serves a critical role in moving creation care forward. We need organize our local groups and connect them nationally while continuing to build local organizations.
In Prospect Park they hosted a community wide discussion on Food, Money and Transition. Also did a LED bulb replacement.

In Ohio, with guidance from the Bishop hosted a couple of district wide educational programming that reached out a bit broader.

Networking and relationship are key to elevating the laity programming for bigger success.

There are parallel tracks in regards to how influence leadership in both the church and public policy.

Is there a national laity group where lay people can reach out to get information? No. Earthkeepers was originally thought to fill that. UMW is now filling that role and is trying to get green teams in each conference and move to churches.

We need to figure out how the Jurisdiction Guides of UMW are connected to Earthkeepers.

The other idea is identify green interested folks and place them on Trustees, SPR and Finance and other committees so the message is spread throughout the leadership.

The other challenge that can happen is so programs that are green create jealousy for other programming.

Laity to work needs to also expand beyond our churches to public policy, our professional lives, and other civic organizations.

We need to leverage the gifts laity have and help them identify.

Organize as laity nationally a skills set survey so laity coming on board can find answers quickly.

We need to encourage laity to move and not wait for permission.

Find allies in your faith community.

Celebrate what's been done at the church big and small.

Connecting into the justice part of the story. This is a way to engage milennials.

Have to educate, challenge and LOVE.

Be creative in how you spread the message.

Follow-up connect lists. Commit to staying in touch with our own email lists.

Forming a group of national folks who meet on a conference call to communicate on a national level.
Cathy Velasquez, Bob Downs, Beth Bond, John Dunlop, Sara Jane VanAllen, Ruth Ann Marks, Christina Krost, Robin Murray
7/27/2018 14:41:29
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
FIncreasing ecological literacy"Time apart" is an important way to generate care for environment, and is good for generating some kinds of "land knowledge" (discussed Boundary Waters), but we are not necessarily good at nurturing a sense of place where we live. Wilderness camps are one resource, but neighborhood gardens or plots seem more likely to generate the kinds of ecological knowledge we are discussing (and elementary school gardens).
Also provides an opportunity for partnerships with churches that have more land than people with other groups. Polyface Farms. Land Institute. How does you life here impact that wild place that you love? Attention to water quality.
Sara Jane Van Allen, Gary Gottfried, Mark Davies, Becky Copeland, Wally Wadd, Hope Hutchinson, Elizabeth Macauley
7/27/2018 14:45:27
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
GHow can all entities of the church better coordinate and focus creation care and climate justice work?We are proposing and drafting a vision statement and structure for a network of networks within the UMC around creation care. This work will continue beyond this summit.
Feels like we are all doing our own thing. Would love to see us more aware of each other, mutually supportive, organizing together. Several of us commented that they do a lot of environmental work outside the church. Do we need an environmental organization that is United Methodist but outside the boards and agencies of the church. If we do need one, what would it should it look like? Caretakers of God's Creation could be the vehicle. Number of programs in UMW, Chevron methane emissions, utilities. Theres a lot of networks. EarthKeepers, GBCS, camps, higher ed. How do we become a network of networks. How do we coordinate without competing between agencies.

With the uncertainty of what's ahead for our denomination - right now a new agency, board, or commission does not make sense. What would a network of networks look like. So that we can be flexible as things emerge. We can step forward for a vision for whatever structure emerges. We want to know what's going on? Students are great in seminary but they go out into local churches and the energy is dissipated. Inter-agency gathering for young adults. Looking for places to collaborate. A formal structure might get siloed. 4 issue areas of church - poverty, health. at the young peoples convocation, there are agency stakeholders represented, and they meet 2x per year. EarthKeepers, too, could benefit from access to a variety of agencies like UMW, GBCS.

What do we want? What is our focus? Would be good to have campaigns that come out of this - but not to focus on one thing only. Wesleyan Covenant association is profoundly organized. Their focus is on doctrinal purity. But they have a structure that is weilding power. Can we be a network that is clear about what we are trying to accomplish. Needs a certain fluidity within a strong commitment. What about a coordinating committee made up of representatives from entities that could communicate on a regular basis. Clearer understanding of what is happening and perhaps opportunities for collaboration.

Two models being proposed here: a coordinating committee, the other is a separate, grassroots organization.

Weleyan Covenant Association, again, is a good model. Possible weaknesses - we would want to be more inclusive, not exclusionary. Clear and defined but not as rigid.

Our call through our baptism is to crae for God's creation. Common hashtag. Our guiding question today could be our guide. Healing may speak more powerfully than "care."

We need a title, a mission, a title, how regularly we meet. Don't want to make it exclusionary. Goal is communicate with each other, educationing Methodists, a place to do some active things, concrete actions. What about organizing congregations? Set of specs a congregation needs to follow to be a green church, green district, green conference. Something like the reconciling ministry. Lots of models out there. ID Methodist congregations that are green, where seminarians can go.

Boards and agencies: EarthKeepers, HIgher ed, global missions, church & scoiety... concern aout making things too top heavy. Need to include diverse voices. It's important to do asset mapping as an early step.

Can we articulate what we are onto? A creation care network of networks within the UMC. THis would be the organizing body for the annual caretakers conference. This group would help give some direction to a focus. We could start with us, and then identify others. Figure out ways to include African UMCs. Will be U.S. specific or global network. Design team or working group that drafts a structure with input from different entities of the church.

Timothy and Cathy Eberhart could get a draft written. Not to hold on power... but to hand it back. Dan Joranko, Beth Bond, Pat Watkins, Susan Mullin willing to help invite other voices.

Liz Lee, Cooper Wiggen, Timothy Eberhart, Paul Slentz, Trudy Dunham, Dan Joranko, Colleen Werdien, Susan Mullin, Pat Watkins, Michael Black, Laurel Kearns, Anita Green
7/27/2018 14:55:18
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
AHow would you help a congregation grieve over the climate change realityWe talked about grief stories. We talked about how there will be people that will need to grief a life style change as they come to the reality of climate change. We talked about how church theology may be preventing us from being in grief. Jessi P, Nancy V, Bill K and Kevin H
7/27/2018 15:04:16
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
CHow do we help each other to uncover our sense of call? (In healing our relationship with creation)First, ask yourself how did you get in touch with your creation call. Figure out how people are called to be caretakers and what is the purpose, action they need to take, and are they learning something new. Connections are necessary to each other and to nature. We need to listen to each other finding the person's passion and what gets them out of bed. By listening we build relationship to walk with each individual. We need to be mindful that calls can change throughout our lives. Everything has a cycle of life when thinking about current and new ministries. People want to be invited. And our actions need to have purpose or why do we continue to participate in them?Joan, Krista, Dana, Allison, Barb, Debi
7/27/2018 15:15:38
Round 2 | 1:30 to 2:45
HWhat to do with fear/anger around the topic of the environment.We began our conversation with mention of a practice called Circle of Peace, a talking circle (with a 'talking piece' passed around) as a way of promoting respectful discussions in a group with diverse opinions. We talked about the many reasons for anger/fear: laziness, privilege, resistance to change, hopelessness, etc. Connections/relationships with people promote communication (and possible change) which can reduce fear and therefore anger. We got off for a while on current politics, the art of venting, and suggestions. The Green Boat by Mary Pipher was suggested reading and, ultimately, using our anger to motivate us to action. Pray, have a mantra, deep breathing, hoeing in the garden and swatting flies!, venting, journaling, stories of hope, big projects and positivity, friends, using FB productively.... Lynne, Naomi, Erik, Eileen, and Cheryl
7/27/2018 16:16:55
Round 3 | 3:00 to 4:30
BLanguage of Sin and Salvation in the conversation of environmental degradation The Conversation was around the intricacies and complications around the language of sin and salvation. The conversation both encompassed the helpful and hurtful nature of the language of sin and salvation as well as how our understandings of sin and salvation are present and absent in the environmental degradation conversation.
Jessi Persson
Dana N.
Eileen Sieler
Jo Flesner
Alma Torres
Hope Hutchison
Debi VanDenBoom
Joan Bignell
Nancy VV
Tim Eberhart
Chris KW
Dave Nyberg
Cooper Wiggen
7/27/2018 16:33:16
Round 3 | 3:00 to 4:30
Who else do we want on this journey to help add to this creation care
Any municipality develops long range plans
Watershed districts often offer grants
Fairs are often looking for presenters
Master Gardeners
Boy Scouts
Girl Scouts
Student Organizations
Citizens Climate Lobby (bi-partisan supporters)
Creation Justice Ministies
Faith-based Community Organizing
Neighborhood Organizations
We have a segregation problem with in the UMC
350 Chapters
Transitions Towns Groups (global)
Sierra Clubs
Isaiah Interfaith Organization
What is it in our community that we need to get involved in to find agreement around such as our eminent domain alliances.
Churches have land - connect with folks that want to garden
Community rights need to make sure their rights are protected and voices are needing to be heard.
Lay people that are knowledgeable to speak to topics of their expertness.
Share stories with the media for environmental solution that inspires others to join in with us.
Ask that UMC pay staff to organize others from various other community organizations to help us be inter-connected.
Public speakers
Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light
New England Resilience Transitions
Citizens for Sustainablilty
Fresh Water Society (money)
Alliance for Sustainability
Being Big & Loud & Impactful on social media and news.
Black Lives Matter
Dept of Defense
Dept of Energy
Dept of Health and Welfare
Erick, Idell, Josh, Bill, Krista, Carol, Sara Jane
7/27/2018 16:33:47
Round 1 | 12:00 to 1:15
What corporate campaigns can we engage in as a church to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions?
Rich conversation on different ways we can engage in corporate campaigns and larger work around advancing systemic justice. discussed
- examples of past corporate campaigns (Hershey's chocolate and child labor practices; dioxin free paper with Staples)
- people need to be valued over profit
- create something like a UM good housekeeping seal of approval with corporations who have.
- highlight and celebrate the process we have made, and here is so much more we can do. e.g. already
- need to understand that who can make changes and put pressure on that entity. at times it may be companies, other times it may be laws that keep companies from moving towards clean and renewable energy.
- lift up the interest and incentives for why companies may want to move in a positive direction. show the transition to renewable energy is profitable.
- need to know what our vision is. sometimes it might be corporate campaigns and other times it may be focused on pressing for change in public policies and laws.
- there are individuals in the church who would resist corporate campaigns. need leadership support and backing. the key is how to present a corporate campaign to get others on board.
- fossil fuel, chemical with a public health angle. show the positive impact the little steps have done and how much more the next steps can bring.
Jill Middlecamp, Diane Krueger, John Dunlop, Liz Lee, Susan Mullin
7/27/2018 16:33:53
Round 3 | 3:00 to 4:30
ECurriculumWe sketched out initial plans for a 8-9 month study geared to transform the world through ecological discipleship, drawing on core Methodist principles and teaching, digging into environmental education, and tying to issues of justice. We have also formed a Facebook group to maintain contact, and plan to continue the conversation and work in the coming months and at the March meeting of the Methodist Higher Education Ecological Responsibility Institute.
Mark Davies, Becky Copeland, Bob Downs, Dan Joranko. Gary Gottfried, Krista Spieler, Joshua Simms, Robin Murray, Jonathan Brake, Beth Bond, Tim Eberhart, Denise Honeycutt
7/27/2018 16:34:47
Round 3 | 3:00 to 4:30
As we pursue Climate Change Solutions, how can we ensure Just Transition?
Rich conversation on what is Just Transition and examples of how it happening or not.
Why we are at this table:
-Training on Just Transition is important. Not everyone knows what it is.
-Emails from members that have family members in coal and oil industry. Or people talk about solutions that will adversely impact people of color.
-Concern about displacing people in the coal industry.
-How to tell the story. How to get part of doing something.
-Twin Sins for genocide and racism and how that informs our conversation
-Lead by what you do, etc. vegan food choices
-The way the church cares about creation and people - we might be in a good position to carry out a just transition
-IL passed social justice transition legislation - in southern IL in coal country
-Helping Atlanta get to 100% renewable energy - city has huge income disparities, money that can be made during this transition needs to benefit all and not just a few
-Live in a rural area - hard to talk about
-Working on community solar project, source of all challenges/disparities is the same
-This is a justice issue.

Add link

Differentiated responsibilities - countries most responsible for climate change and least impacted. What is Just Transition: "Jobs with Peace, planned transition from military to peace economy" was part of GI Bill. Super fund of workers/Just Transition - new start for workers threatened by environmental policies. Is it just a "fancy funeral?" Within larger climate frames - those that have been biggest emitters are not paying for the costs of climate change. What does Just Transition look like globally. When we are pursuing climate change solutions, whose human rights are being impacted. Also conversations about how climate solutions are also impacting other life forms.

Other definitions/comments:
-other creatures would be much better off if there were fewer of us humans; zero population growth

Within Community Solar - interested in making it cooperative. Everyone is an owner. Distributed solar.

Just Solar Coalition of MNIPL - workshop tomorrow.

UMW has been partnering with NAACP - Laredo, TX on frontline of separated families, half of budget goes to electrical budget due to high energy costs for AC, partnered with NAACP to install free solar panels, discounted rates and incentives, so can reduce cost to them, fundraiser. We recognize an organization doing great work, but crippled by electricity bill. Will lower their emission + free up more funds for programming work. Clients are being trained in solar installation.

How many workers can a solar economy support? Solar worker rates growing faster than any other energy sector. (May be changing due to tariffs). Solar jobs can't be exported and are healthier. Coal minor jobs are decreasing anyway, just as much due to automation, than regulation.

Challenge is that where solar and wind jobs are is not where coal mines are. How do we as a faith community to fill in those needs. Question here in MN about mining. Seems cheaper to subsidize solar panel construction rather than allowing mining. Hard to transition when older. What are jobs that don't rely on extracting resources. Encourage youth from early age - to think of other vocations. What are those ideas of nonextractive economy jobs: things like window creation. Movie - "Happening" - showing big new projects.

In Just Transition - needs to include local economy. Company in a Just Transition model needs to think locally for where they source materials and where their items are sent later to reduce transportation. Generate enough income to live a satisfactory life, not one of abundance. Central NC, increasing young people who want to farm - conversations with local churches, to link wanna be farmers with Annual Conference property. HAFA - Hmong American Farming American - elders wanting to do farming with old techniques, new farmers wanting to use equipment. Being penalized for using eco-friendly techniques. Illinois Green Economy network - embracing of skilled jobs in waste management, sustainable building, sustainable agriculture, solar through community college. Green Economy job training at a lower cost.

We need people to do these jobs? Holding up the holiness of that work. Larger Care economy.

Standing Rock pipeline was rerouted around Bismarck through Standing Rock reservation. Free, Prior and Informed Consent from UN Declaration on Human Rights for all people. Claim for Standing Rock was they brought a few people in a room to tell them what they were going to do. That wasn't "Free, Prior, and Informed Consent." Another example, took land away from tribal group with wild horses, gave it to mining company. When Free, Prior and Informed Consent is not followed - World Bank has pulled money from projects. Declaration Doesn't hold as much weight in the US. Last country to sign on with a bunch of provisions.

Are we bringing indigenous voices to our climate solutions. Think long and hard about unintended consequences of climate solutions. Who is being left behind? Complicated situations: eg. oil trains next to light rail transit next to proposed low income housing. In Nashville - split between light rail and low income housing. Transit lines would add to gentrification. Sturgeon fish endangered - money for "restoration work" through US Fish and Wildlife, threatening indigenous work.

USCAN UMW work: environmental orgs work with frontline communities. Many debates and disagreement about what works. Need to bring in people who are from the community that is directly impacted, ask to lead, if they don't have time, fund them so they have the livelihood to do the work. Are we listening globally.

What are we doing to bring in impacted communities and support. IL IPL (Faith in Place) Future Energy Job Act - how do we use these funds. Listen/Lead/Share programs around state, from different lens. (IPL faith lens, Sierra Club, etc) Tool kit/presentations. Working in southern IL - sitting down, what does a future economy with clean energy look like in the state. Take information back to policy makers. Trying to call it a listening session - more a community conversation. Happening now before November elections.

Make sure impacted communities are present at the design side.

In rural communities, invite farmers in with Land Stewardship Project. Appreciation that they are invited in and their voices are heard. Can become very political. Farmers Appreciation Luncheon in their church. Awareness of timing of when you hold this event. These were dairy farmers. Land Stewardship Project is a good resource for sustainable farming.

Would love to see a church with a biodigester that is close to a farm. UCC in NC - farm church - work on farm Sunday morning, then share a meal from the farm, then share communion and worship. Hope is to have church supported from farm. Farm Church in NC. Jubilee Farm in IL.

Think creatively. Need to offer courage and support to farmers who are feeling alone doing sustainable farming.

Taking the funds we have to redirect to environmental justice communities. Tithe for a justice commitment. Women's Carbon Fund. Even with an event like this providing scholarships so people who can't come. Tithe a portion of church pledges to EJ work.

Need to have a conversation on fundraising!!

Women's Carbon Fund - UMW Carbon Offset Fund to offset carbon footprint of UMC staff who are flying - and pledge to micro development, sustainability projects, etc.

Why aren't all of our churches following all of the UMW projects?

Larger issue of UMC - some are really committed, some are not aware.

How do we build those connections? Social justice matters to younger people. UMW Climate Justice study for multiple years. Thousands of people were informed.

MN Annual Conference had a preconference event with a Council on Race and Religion, Commission on Native American Ministries, and Commission on the Status and Role of Women. Theme of dismantling doctrine of discovery, racial justice. Concerned about misiology - concerned with UMC mission statement sounds so colonial. How difficult it is to change culture. How to do that when UMC has been so white framed, so colonial. Integrated Wisdom of natural systems. Adjust our theology and world view.

Methodist congregation in eco-village tied to OK Missionary Conference. Does the theology really coincide with what they are doing? How far can they deviate? Scared to deviate. Randy Woodley here at Why Water Matters conference. Creation healed is salvation. The world operates well. Salvation = healing in the body. Evangelical context where salvation is in heaven. Be inspiration for others to do it. More eco-villages can be born from other traditions. Global Eco-Village Network - in Europe.

Need to become "bilingual" in using conservative religious language.
Creation Call not just an altar call.

Caught in systems - had to use fossil fuels to get here. Tragic not just sinful. Place of lament. Participation in environmental violence.
Liz Lee (UMW, Climate Justice Lead), John Dunlop (Hennepin Ave UMC Mpls), Cheryl Nymann (serves 3 churches in rural MN), Lynne Hunter (southern KS), Jill Middlecamp (UMC in Rosemount MN), Ruth Ann Marks (Prospect Park UMC in Mpls), Catherine Williams (Northfield, MN), Bill Konrardy (Mpls MN), Naomi Yaeger (Duluth, MN), Pat Watkins (NC), Marcus Briggs Cloud (Muscogee People, OK Missionary Conference), Christina Krost (Be Just Be Green Guide, Faith in Place, IL), Michael Black (Decatur, GA), Kevin Hein (Montevideo, MN), Diane Krueger (Hamline UMC), Barb Drager (NEUMC in Mpls), Paul Slentz (TN), Cathy Velasquez Eberhart (St. Paul, MN), and others who joined as we continued the conversation.