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September 2019
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How can you keep leftover paint out of landfills and waterways? By helping people recycle it. As the manager of Snyder Paints and Wallpaper, Goshen, Ind., this is something Greg Smucker is uniquely equipped to do. Greg is also a member of Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship.  Learn more 
Photo and article by Olivia Smucker.
CONGREGATIONS

East Goshen Mennonite Church, Goshen, Ind.
Love God, Love Creation


This spring, East Goshen Mennonite Church's interest in creation care culminated in a four-week worship series entitled, "For God So Loved the Cosmos," and the dedication of 300 solar panels. read more

Seattle Mennonite Church, Seattle Wa.
Mural Addresses Relationship with the Duwamish


Thanks to Thalia Neufeld, a member of Seattle Mennonite Church’s youth group, the congregation now has a mural that makes public their desire to repair relationships with Indigenous Peoples.  read more

Thalia Neufeld, far right, poses with friends from Seattle Mennonite Church in front of the mural she designed for an !Explore project. 
 
NETWORK NEWS
Coming Next Month
MCCN adds Canadian Voice

We have been looking for ways for MCCN to be more present in Canada and for Canadian perspectives to be included in our communications. Meet Anthony Siegrist, our new columnist. Anthony may introduce us to other writers as well. 
"I’m a pastor and theologian currently serving a Mennonite congregation in Ottawa, ON. My most recent book project, Speaking of God: An Essential Guide to Christian Thought, will be published this fall by Herald Press.

"My passion for creation care has grown from a childhood immersed in Canada’s boreal forest and from student days working as a wilderness guide and farm hand. This fall I am taking a sabbatical from my pastoral responsibilities to study environmental sustainability. I look forward to contributing a Canadian perspective to the Mennonite Creation Care Network."  
Join a research project

Katie Isaac, a Climate Fellow with the Center for Sustainable Climate Solutions, is seeking interviewees who can help her understand the challenges and successes congregations face in caring for the earth.
Katie's goal is to create a series of creation care plans for Mennonite churches interested in introducing such practices to their congregations or taking their current practices to the next level. These “road maps” could make it easier for congregations to determine what will be most effective in their contexts.
 
Katie is interested in speaking with pastors or church leaders from congregations at all levels of engagement, from very involved to those with other priorities. To participate, take an initial survey.     Learn more about Katie Isaac.
Sponsor profile:
Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College

Mennonite Creation Care Network (MCCN) has two primary sponsors. One is Everence and the other is Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College. Merry Lea provides the salary for a half-time staff person for MCCN, and its executive director serves on the MCCN Council.

Merry Lea is an 1,189-acre nature preserve located in Northern Indiana. The center is known for its unique and diverse land base, quality environmental education and a visionary emphasis on sustainable choices. Being embedded in a larger organization of this caliber strengthens MCCN. read more

Rieth Village, a biological field station for undergraduates, plays a central role in the work of Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center of Goshen College. The nature center is one of the two organizations that sponsor Mennonite Creation Care Network. 
Discovery 2019 trip visits Merry Lea

For another look at what Merry Lea offers, join high school students from Eastern Mennonite School on a visit to the nature center's wetlands and green buildings. read more

Seeing the network:
It takes a village to offer an internship


Olivia Smucker's experience living at Merry Lea while working as a faith outreach intern for MCCN and CSCS illustrates the symbiotic relationships these organizations have. read more
 

EVENTS

Season of Creation

September 1 to October 4
Many churches worldwide are now celebrating the season of creation. The season focuses on God as Creator, Christ with us as we face the ecological crisis and the Holy Spirit empowering us to care for creation. Liturgical resources and other ideas are available at:
Global Climate Strike
September 20 to 27
Youth around the world have been striking on Fridays to demand action on climate change. Now there's a chance for their elders to join them. How can you contribute to this week of action?  See dates and locations.


Who Cares About Climate Change? Pastoral Responses to Denial and Despair
January 31 to February 2
St. Paul's Commons Retreat and Conference Center, Los Angeles, is the site of the fifth pastoral retreat on climate change from CSCS and MCCN. Registration details will be posted on the MCCN retreat page by October. 

 
REFLECTIONS
Be Like Limestone

"If the Apostle Paul had been on our field trip, he might have said, 'Be like limestone, do not be conformed to this world.'"

Joanne Moyer, Edmonton, Alta., shared this reflection at the MCCN council's last meeting. For more on how Joanne finds spiritual renewal in places like Jasper National Park, read her devotional here.
RESOURCES
Book
Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants  
by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Kimmerer, a Potawatomi botanist, approaches the natural world with a mix of scientific and Indigenous insights. If you have not yet read this 2013 collection of essays, early autumn is a good season to pick up the book. In one of the initial essays, the author discusses her love of asters and goldenrod and her curiosity about why they grow together. Here they are, keeping company in an Indiana meadow.
Website
Earthdeeds: Local Solutions to Global Warming     
earthdeeds.org

This website makes it easy--and interesting--to calculate and "onset" your carbon footprint. While carbon offsets disappear into a large, anonymous fund, Earthdeeds' "onset" model allows you to fund a wide range of local sustainability projects. Three projects related to Goshen College are among the options.

The carbon calculator built into the site also provides you with carbon comparisons to other activities. You flew from New York to London this year? You could have stayed home and watched 77,000 hours of TV instead. Or eaten 86,625 bananas. Either way, it's the same as the annual per-person emissions of Venezuela.   visit now

Book
Forest Church: A Field Guide to a Spiritual Connection with Nature  
by Bruce Stanley

"O God, enlarge within us the sense of fellowship with all living things," wrote Basil the Great. If you'd like to share experiences like that with others but aren't sure how, check out Forest Church. The author is part of the forest church movement in the U.K. He does a good job of explaining the value of outdoor worship and how to do it well. read more


ECO CHALLENGES

A column based on tips by Carole Suderman, Boulder Mennonite Church, Boulder, Colo. Carole has been offering her congregations challenges like these for the past 20 years. Tips are adapted for a broader audience.
Water is a precious resource. Being good stewards of God's creation includes conserving it. 
  • Do you have an outdoor hose? Be sure to check weekly for leaks, especially around the connections. Even a tiny leak can waste up to 1,000 gallons of water per month. 
  • Resist the temptation to hose off the driveway, which wastes water. Instead, sweep away debris, getting some exercise at the same time. Likewise, rake leaves by hand instead of spewing pollution with a leaf blower. Why are they a problem?
GOOD NEWS FROM ALL OVER

Yes, There is Life After Flying

In 2011, Peter Kalmus, a climate scientist, gave up flying after discovering that flights dominated his carbon footprint. He and his career survived. He reflects on the decision and other lifestyle changes he made in this upbeat article from YES. 

Don't Forget to Unprint Your Paper

Engineers from Rutgers University have developed a method that can remove toner from paper using pulses of light. They are now working on integrating "unprinting" into home and office printers. The feature would cut down on the energy costs and chemical pollution required for recycling.  read more
 
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mccn@goshen.edu


P.O. Box 263
Wolf Lake, IN   46796


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Mennonite Creation Care Network · P.O. Box 263 · Wolf Lake, IN 46796 · USA

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