Inside this Newsletter...
Chesapeake Clearwater Revival
Call to Advocacy
RiverWise - Anne Arundel County
Call for Volunteers
Blue Water Congregations - Baltimore
Covenantal Partners Program - 2 open slots in Baltimore!
10,000 Trees - Maryland/Pennsylvania/Virginia/DC
Faith-Based Outdoor Education
Small Grants Available for Climate Education
Chesapeake Clearwater Revival
With love there is renewal.
We know we are loved unconditionally by Allah, Yahweh, Lord Almighty, Ishvara, Ek Onkar…our Creator. This unconditional love reminds us that each day is a new day, a new opportunity to weed out the bad and nourish the good. Each day is a chance to reshape and repair who we are and how our actions reflect the glory of our Creator.
Recently, my family and I took an educational boat tour of the Potomac River in Washington DC, led by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. The highlight of the tour was when we threw our net into the water near the confluence of the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers to see what we could find. Our crew leaders recounted that not too long ago, these rivers were called “the dead river” and “Anatoxia.”
To our surprise, we collected 50-60 fish of many different species! Yes, we caught many catfish – some with tumors and parasites. However, we also saw perch – a delicate fish that cannot survive in areas with heavy contamination. There were several types of sunfish, large-mouth bass, shiners, and trout…and grass…actual river grass…a sign of hope that revival is happening.
You, too, can witness first-hand this revival. Chesapeake Bay Foundation offers trips from Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC. The Anacostia Riverkeeper is leading free kayak trips on Thursday nights this summer, or find a watershed group near you and see if there are field trips available close to your own home.
Interfaith Partners for the Chesapeake hopes to develop an outdoor educational/spiritual experience for people of faith, too! In order to get your thoughts on such a program, please complete this 5-minute survey and tell us your ideas.
While we're on the subject of revival, how IS the Bay coming along? Did YOUR state meet its pollution-reduction goals in 2013? Read the most recent Milestone Reports for Maryland, Eastern Shore, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and see what's influencing Capitol Hill from all across the watershed.
Lastly, great news from Washington DC reminds us that progress is slow-but-steady! Trash-Free Maryland announced that the DC Council unanimously passed a ban on polystyrene foam food containers, effective in 2016.
Caring for Creation is challenging and sometimes discouraging. These signs of revival are loving reminders that we are in a constant state of renewal. They are gifts of hope that lift us up and recommit us to this sacred work. May we all be blessed with hopeful reminders of progress in our day-to-day efforts to restore Creation!
In revived hope,
Call to Advocacy
This is a new section in our emails. We will summarize current opportunities to engage in legislative advocacy so that you are well-informed:
- Styrofoam bans throughout the state - if you would like to work with Trash-Free Maryland to bring about a ban on Styrofoam in your region, please email me and I will connect you to their organizing campaign.
- Stop Cove Point - On July 13th, hundreds of advocates gathered in DC to express their rejection of fracked gas exports out of Cover Point. Click here to stay informed of this campaign.
- EPA Clean Water Rule - IPC participates in the Choose Clean Water Coalition which supports the EPA Clean Water Rule (EPA-HQ-OW-2011-0880). We continue to engage in legislative advocacy to express support of the rule. If you would like to help us with this effort, please email me. Or, if you want to file your own comments to the EPA about the Clean Water Rule click here. Your can even submit your comments in video form! Watch one of our own volunteers, Elizabeth Awuah, share her opinion with the EPA!
- EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan - On July 29-30, the EPA will host a listening session on proposed rules to limit power plant carbon pollution. An interfaith prayer will take place beforehand at EPA headquarters (12th Street side) and a secular rally will take place at 10:30, with other activities in between. For more details, click here. If you would like to tell the EPA to limit pollution from power plants, IPL has set up a page to help you do that here.
RiverWise Congregations - Anne Arundel County
Have you always wanted to become a trained Master Watershed Steward? Now’s your chance – and you can help your congregation at the same time!
Offered to congregations in Anne Arundel County, this program provides grant funding for technical & financial assistance of between $20K-$60K per place of worship to help beautify grounds and reduce polluted runoff. Once a new Steward from your congregation becomes trained as a Master Watershed Steward, their capstone project will be a fully-funded stormwater project at your congregation! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Attendance of one Informational Session is required prior to application. First Session is TOMORROW! Please register for a session at http://www.aawsa.org/. If you are unable to attend any of the sessions listed, please contact Suzanne Etgen @ email@example.com, 410-222-3831 to schedule a meeting.
Please visit our newly revamped Volunteer Signup page if you can donate time or money to IPC's work! We're looking for volunteers in a variety of areas, including Spanish translators, Advocates for upcoming legislative issues, IT/website support, social media support, Outreach/Education, and board committees. Check out our Volunteer Signup page and tell us how you would like to get more involved!
Raindrops keep fallin' on your head when you leave services? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on the Blue Water Congregations program, which offers the financial, technical, and spiritual guidance needed to implement stormwater mitigation projects on congregational grounds.
How will those stormwater fees be spent? Share your ideas with Baltimore City representatives at two of these remaining community meetings.
Covenantal Partners Program
Does your green ministry need new energy or new direction? Would your group benefit from a spiritually-based visioning session and guidance? IPC can come to your group and lead a visioning session to help you map out your next steps. We are seeking congregations in Baltimore to embark on this journey with us and have 2 open slots to fill. Email Jodi Rose for more information or to express interest.
- Are you looking for a project to express earth stewardship which includes spiritual reflection? Then the 10,000 Trees Project is your answer! We are seeking congregations now to participate in tree planting projects for 2015 (2014 is filled).
- Are you (or someone you know) a person of faith attending a congregation in Frederick County? We'd like to share this project with you!
To respond to either of these questions, please contact: Kolya Braun-Greiner at email@example.com
Faith-Based Outdoor Education
In case you didn't fill out our survey yet, here's a second chance! We need to hear from you in order to design a program that benefits the faith community. Please complete the survey here.
Small Grants Available for Climate Education Efforts
Maryland Climate Coalition announced small grants up to $1,000 for outreach and education to increase the public's understanding of how climate issues impact our lives. If your congregation would like to organize an outreach/education event, please contact IPC for assistance with potential grant funding.