EARTH WEEK

 

Soil solutions, 4 mins, Center for Food Safety.
Michael Pollan, food writer, narrates this simple and beautiful explanation of how soil sequesters carbon.

Our Environmental Stewardship Team wanted to take this Earth Week as an opportunity to teach parishioners about the connection between our food systems, injustice, and the environment. We are following a curriculum devised by Interfaith Power and Light, which started as a unique coalition of Episcopal churches to educate people of faith about climate change. We’ve selected a few opportunities below for you to get involved and to learn about how you can help to support food justice and help our planet.

Eden’s Bounty Garden

Volunteers Welcome!

Eden’s Bounty Garden brings together parishioners, preschool families, community members and businesses, to support those who visit Under One Roof Food Pantry. Vegetables are bagged and given to the food pantry that is located at St. Paul’s and supported by Maumee Churches United. Pantry clients are thrilled to receive wholesome and healthy vegetables along with their other groceries. 

Eden’s Bounty welcomes volunteers of all ages and interests to assist with planning, planting, watering, harvesting and general garden maintenance.  We also appreciate donations of young plants and excess vegetables from home-grown gardens to supplement our produce.

there will be a garden blessing on sunday after the 10:00 service

Earth Day is Thursday

Join us as a small group at noon to take part in a national prayer.

at noon, help build the largest participation in shared prayer for the climate. click to join.

Creation stories from many religious traditions center around gardens and soil. In Abrahamic traditions God made humans from dust, and placed them in the Garden of Eden to tend and keep it. A common North American Indigenous creation story tells how Turtle Island (North America) was created when soil was placed on the back of a turtle.

Humans have lived in close connection with the soil for thousands of years. Some cultures flourished by living in harmony with nature, taking only what they needed, and preserving the soil so that it could continue to nourish them. North American indigenous cultures grew their food using principles that have been adopted as conservation practices today. We acknowledge all food grown here is grown on formerly native lands.

Modern industrial agriculture practices have allowed us to grow food more abundantly and cheaply, but at the cost of the health of our soil. Tilling and chemical inputs degrade the soil, inhibiting its ability to hold water and carbon. This leads to erosion and desertification, releasing carbon into the atmosphere contributing to climate change. According to the United Nations two-thirds of the world is desertifying and the world’s remaining topsoil will be gone in 60 years unless we find a way to save our soil.

click for climate change
fast facts

Learn how our soil can help reverse climate change.

The Soil Story

It’s not about “sustainable” anymore, it’s about being “regenerative.” —Go beyond sustainability and become regenerative with Climate Victory Gardens.

5 Ways to Make Your Garden Regenerative

Click to learn more about regenerative agriculture

The worst impacts of the climate crisis in the United States are felt by Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), and low-income communities, in the form of increased floods, droughts, fires, and heat deaths. These communities also often lack access to fresh, healthy, affordable food in their neighborhoods. According to the USDA millions of people live in these areas, called Food Deserts. Conversely, food justice is when all have access to fresh and nutritious food as an inherent human right. The fight for food justice seeks to address structural barriers to that right.

Food injustice, climate injustice, and racial injustice are all intertwining threats with particular impact on BIPOC and low-income communities. Because we embrace justice, we act with inclusion and respect, and we work in solidarity with vulnerable and marginalized communities. We support climate solutions that connect the dots between the intersecting challenges of racial justice and food justice.

Food is an important part of our faith traditions – we use it to express our connection to each other, to the earth, and to our spirituality. Our traditions have certain beliefs about food, we use food symbolically in our liturgies, and various faith traditions require specific food practices in the daily lives of their believers. And all the major faith traditions call us to care for the earth. So how we grow our food is integral to the way we care for the earth and each other as religious people.

ACT

Since we all purchase food, we all have the opportunity to influence how our food is grown.
Consider these three options for action for you and your congregation:

 

INFLUENCE

Purchase your food from local growers and ask them about their soil practices. You can influence local growers’ practices. Find growers at localharvest.org. Find Black Farmers here or here.

SUPPORT

We have a wonderful garden at St. Paul’s that is already working to help feed those less fortunate. Talk to Jane Weber. Do we need funds for tools or seeds or the compost? Do we need more volunteers? (YES!) Supporting an existing garden builds relationships that help strengthen community.

GROW

Start a new food garden to support food justice. Incorporate soil conservation practices in the garden. If you don’t have the right conditions for a garden, the Wolcott House has community gardens on its property that follow these principles and is always looking for more interested individuals to expand their number of plots. Additionally, 10% of everything grown is supposed to be donated to the Under One Roof Food Pantry.

Make a Donation

Help Sponsor our LED lights!

The Environmental Stewardship Team has organized a fundraising campaign to purchase new LED tubes to retrofit the existing fixtures throughout the church. This was a recommendation from the 2019 Energy Audit. Please consider contributing to this great cause!