Green Sanctuary Team Brings 7th Principle Home

Carol-Lee Baker, Volunteer Recognition Team Member

During the month of April the Volunteer Recognition Team will be honoring the volunteers in the Social Justice & Action Lay Ministry Cluster and focusing on the Green Sanctuary Team — Terry Jones (Chair), Larry Dendy, Cara Andrews, Bill and Jackie Pierson, Liz Weaver, Merridy McDaniel, and Melanie Hennings — during the April 19 services.

History

gr sanc mtg 2 300The Green Sanctuary Program provides a path for congregational study, reflection and action in response to environmental challenges. Initiated in 1991, it evolved from the Seventh Principle Project which published a Green Sanctuary Handbook, introducing Unitarian Universalist congregations to the concept of integrating our environmental consciousness into our faith communities. That first handbook helped UUs begin to imagine what it would look like if congregational life reflected the seventh Principle of Unitarian Universalism, “Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.” The handbook has since been revised many times to include other aspects of environmental concerns, environmental justice and specific focus areas for becoming accredited as a Green Sanctuary.

In 2006 greater attention was focused on environmental issues by congregations within UUA, and the commitment to address those issues through a structured program intensified. At General Assembly a Statement of Conscience was adopted on the Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change. This very strong statement became a grass roots effort, closely associated with the Green Sanctuary work in many congregations. A more defined program was developed in combination with a process for renewing accreditation every five years.

Here at the Fellowship

gr sanc at fair 450The Green Sanctuary Team here at UUFA began working toward the activities and projects necessary to become a candidate for accreditation in 2010, led by Patty Freeman-Lynde, thus joining the efforts of many Unitarian Universalist congregations in becoming stewards of the earth.

The team has recently completed requirements for creating a Wildlife Habitat on our grounds. The process included removal of exotic invasive plants, creating sustainable sources of water for wildlife, providing bird food for our feeder and improving the existing herb garden. The team is also working toward obtaining and planting beneficial native plants. Other current projects include continuing with composting and recycling efforts, and maintaining and upgrading the children’s RE garden. The team has also partnered with RE to install mason bee houses on the grounds.

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Carol-Lee displays note cards presented to the Green Santuary Team.

The Green Sanctuary Team has several projects that they want to work on, but they need additional help. Projects include reducing energy usage in our building and on our grounds; working on transit issues both in the community and in our Fellowship; and researching and addressing environmental justice issues in our community. Each of these could have significant impact on our Fellowship.

Along with the lovely cards designed by Barbara Leissner, the Volunteer Recognition Team also presented a native azalea, above, to be planted at the Fellowship. The Green Sanctuary Team meets on the second Monday of the month, at 6 pm. To learn more about the team’s plans and how you can help, contact Terry Jones.

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The other great Social Justice volunteers

In addition to the Green Sanctuary volunteers, the Social Justice and Action Ministry Cluster led by Karen Solheim brings together volunteers for the following actions:

Ethical Eating: Kate Blane, chair; Dan Everett, Karen Solheim, Terry Jones, Kathy Mason, Caryl Sundland

Interfaith Hospitality Network: Julie Sapp, chair; Al Bergins, Diane & Lanier Bridges, Mark & Marta Daniell, Mary Jean Hartel, Hester Meyers, Marguerite & Will Holmes, Bill & Peggy Horton, Jean Bleyle, Paula Keam, Jane King, Laura Leiden, Barbara Leissner, Suzanne Murphy, Martha Phillips, Debby Perry, Sally Randall, Rosemary Woodel, Arthur McKay, Illona Stewart, Carl & Judy McNichols

Our Daily Bread: Will Sheahan, chef; Lois Shenkel, former ass’t chef; Doug Atkinson, Carol-Lee Baker, Al Bergins, Kate Blane, Diane Bridges, Diana Cerwonka, Dan Everett, Bill & Peggy Horton, Paula Keam, Sherry Lowrance, Nancy MacNair, Clela Reed, Susanna Moriarty, Sally Randall, Cory Taylor, Suzanne Murphy, Michelle Simpson, Rosemary Woodel

Social Action Committee: David Jarrett, chair, Karen Solheim, Caryl Sundland, Nancy MacNair, Connie Bruce, Greg Davis, Rick Fyock, Jane Kobres, Terry Jones, Ange Kahn, Julie Sapp, Michele Simpson, Carol Lee Baker, Rosemary Wood

Find more about the groups and their projects here.