As people of faith, we know we are called to be caretakers of our precious home, God’s good Earth.
We can respond in many ways:
- In worship, we can praise and thank God the Creator for the gifts of creation;
- In our daily lives, we can take responsibility for how our actions impact the creation and our fellow creatures;
- As church members, we can make our congregations models of environmental awareness and responsibility;
- As citizens we can support laws and policies to maintain ecological health and secure sustainable livelihoods for all people.
Houses of worship across the country are cutting energy costs and practicing environmental stewardship by upgrading their buildings and operations to use energy more efficiently. Some are drawing on renewable energy sources by installing solar panels or purchasing ‘green power’ from their utilities, for example.
The Wisconsin Council of Churches is circulating this survey in order to get a better picture of what congregations in Wisconsin are doing, or would like to do, to take advantage of clean energy’s benefits for themselves, their communities, and God’s creation. This will help us see what we might do to help congregations improve their energy stewardship, and to promote public policies that will help move Wisconsin forward into a cleaner, safer, and more equitable energy future.
Please respond to this short survey by December 8. Don’t worry if you don’t know all the details about a project. We can follow up for more information.
Reconciled in Christ With Creator and Creation: The Worshipful Work of Caring for Creation
Wisconsin Council of Churches Policy Statement, Adopted December 12, 2006:
“As members of the Wisconsin Council of Churches, we call ourselves and our fellow Christians to repentance and to a renewed commitment to responsible living in our part of Creation. As Christian Communities, we have a responsibility to lift up the ethical and spiritual values that must guide our behavior as members of earth’s household.”
Read the Full Statement (PDF file).
Energy and Ethics
How we get and use energy – in our homes and churches as well as in our communities and the larger society – has a huge impact on the health of people and the rest of creation. By being more energy efficient and using more renewable energy resources, we can reduce harmful air pollution, curb climate change, create jobs, protect communities and landscapes from dangerous mining and drilling, reduce international tensions, and save money that can be used for other and better purposes.
As individuals and churches, there are many ways we can reduce our dependence on dirty and damaging sources of energy. We can take simple and easy steps to conserve energy; install energy-efficient lights and appliances; walk, bike, carpool and take public transportation; sign up for our energy utilities’ renewable energy programs, install solar panels or geothermal heating systems; and so on.
Public policies at the state and federal level are also important. Join the WCC Advocacy Network to receive occasional e-mail alerts about opportunities to influence pending legislation relating to energy and the environment. You can also find information on state and federal elected officials, and contact them to express your views as a citizen and person of faith through our Legislative Alert Center.
Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy for Homes and Churches
- Focus on Energy, a state program funded by utility ratepayers established to provide information, resources, and financial incentives to Wisconsin households, schools and businesses (including congregations) for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects; and
- EnergyStar for Congregations, a program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which offers free online resources including an Action Workbook for Congregations and the Portfolio Manager energy management tool, and awards an EnergyStar Certification for congregations that have achieved a high level of energy efficiency.
- World Council of Churches – care for creation and climate justice
- Interfaith Power and Light – a religious response to global warming
- Creation Justice Ministries – for just relationships among all creation
- GreenFaith – interfaith partners for the environment
- Denominational Statements on the Environment
- Let All Creation Praise – resources for worship
- United States Global Change Research Program
- Wisconsin Initiative on Climate Change Impacts
- Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
- Climate Communications
Creation Care Initiatives in Wisconsin:
- Wisconsin Interfaith Power and Light
- Interfaith Earth Network
- Racine Green Congregations
- Ecojusticia (Spanish language)
- Wisconsin Green Muslims