“When you sweat and plant trees together, it’s a very healing experience. It’s restorative for people, it’s restorative for ecology.” - Pastor Michael Martin, Stillmeadow Community Fellowship

When Pastor Michael Martin began preaching at Stillmeadow Community Fellowship in 2017 he could have never dreamed of what the woods behind his congregation could look like. A jungle of invasive plants and animals plagued the woodland behind Stillmeadow, swallowing the once healthy forest and creek into the tangle of vines. The potential was there, all that was needed was the right push. 

Pastor Martin was that push, and in 2018 he was inspired to seek help. Together, with the hard work of the U.S. Forest Service, Blue Water Baltimore, Interfaith Partners for the Chesapeake, and now more than 2,000 volunteers, the 10 acres of urban woodland behind Stillmeadow is beginning to transform.

Where once invasives and the barren trunks of ash trees stood, now a rejuvenated forest begins to grow. It is not just the forest that is rejuvenated at Stillmeadow, it is the whole community.

Now, two and a half years later, the restoration stands as an emblem of environmental justice – bettering their local ecosystem and community equally. 

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Taylor Swanson

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Communications & Outreach Coordinator