Gloria Dei Lutheran Church has been certified as a Climate Justice Congregation by Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light (MNIPL), a statewide climate justice organization representing thousands of people of faith and conscience. Gloria Dei joins an elite group of 24 congregations around the state taking strong and effective actions to address climate change.
MNIPL’s year-long certification program gives congregations the focus, resources and support to galvanize their community into powerful climate action. Once a year, they also reflect on successes, struggles, and new knowledge gained from their experience. More information about MNIPL’s certification program is found here.
Environmental-focused actions taken by the Gloria Dei’s Caring for Creation team over the 2021-22 time frame included:
– Purchasing less dense paper for printing the church bulletins saving on use of timber resources and money.
– Getting 100 percent of its electricity from clean renewables through Xcel Energy’s Windsource program as of February 2022.
– Recycling church pews taken out for the sanctuary remodeling project. About 10 pews were taken home by church members. Most were given by Better Futures, a non-profit that employs men who have been chronically homeless or had mental health challenges to repurpose, recycle or reuse materials.
– Saving miscellaneous renovation materials from the landfill including brick, marble, and doors which were repurposed into other parts of the project.
– Encouraging church members to contact their state representatives to dedicate part of the state’s budget surplus to climate improvement.
– Assisting with a four-week Sunday school lesson on being a good steward, which included a review of recycling principles and the need to recognize and protect pollinators.
– Providing opportunities for children to make beeswax food wraps to learn about the delicate balance humans have with bees, recognizing God’s beautiful creation and our role to care for it. The biodegradable wraps could be used over and over, replacing single-use plastic wrap.