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Environment


CURRENT CONCERN

Environmental Issues Need Environmental Connections First
Those of us that are passionate about being good stewards to what has been entrusted to us, namely creation, assume that all others share that same view. We try to educate people on all the major environmental issues of our day and we sit frustrated from their lack of conviction. Why?

We need to step back and work from the ground up- connecting people with the natural world and their faith, sparking curiosity, helping them form an emotional connection with creation. From here we can develop the moral compass that shapes our stewardship and finally utilize that new worldview to enact action, lasting action.

We often think of only children needing this connection but it is for all ages. Even if you were a farm kid growing up playing in the back-forty everyday, you still may need rejuvenation in this connection today. Seeing families during our hands-on ecology programs is such a joy on several levels. First, parents spending time with their children (real time, not half distracted checking e-mails time). Second, the excitement of children for discovery is contagious and you often see the parents getting more excited than the child. Lastly, on their way to the car, you can overhear the conversation, “we need to do this more often.” Laudato Si Project strives to restore this natural connection and deepen our faith that will call us into action. Learn more at www.naturecatholic.org


Give Nature a Quarter?

In your yard, at your school, at your parish- a quarter (25%) of the land left wild- not mowed. A place for pollinators, a place for birds, a place for beauty, a place for us to connect with nature, a place for you to Care for Our Common Home.

It may be as simple as not doing anything. Don't mow it, just let let it be. Even an area left fallow and "weedy" is tremendously more beneficial than a manicured lawn. If you want to be more intentional about what grows in that area, then this year is a perfect time to plant a prairie or butterfly garden. The plight of pollinators, like the monarch butterfly, are becoming more well-known but often times individual people feel powerless to help. Nothing can be further from the truth.

Give Nature a Quarter! The easiest and most impactful thing you can do is to reduce the size of lawn. Weed-free lawns require a tremendous amount "inputs" to maintain them; herbicides, insecticides, fertilizer, and water. In return, you get to spend much of your Saturday mowing.

What's the solution? Native prairie plants. These prairie plants support beneficial insects and pollinators likes butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. They also free up your Saturday from mowing and they look beautiful. Most cultivated flowers are breed for certain colors at the expense of nectar and usability by wildlife- so go native and Give Nature a Quarter!

Contact Laudato Si’ Project at laudatosiproject@gmail.com or on naturecatholic.org to get started.

Joe Meyer is executive director of Laudato Si’ Project, a 501(c)3 non-profit with a mission is to restore humanity’s connection to the natural world through education, stewardship, and recreation.

INFORMATION

We Are Still In
On June 23 Mayor Barrett and other city leaders signed and adopted a Common Council resolution solidifying the City's support for the Paris Climate Accord.  
 
Mayor Barrett has already affirmed his commitment with more than 300 Mayors and thousands of businesses at WeAreStillIn.com

Archdiocesan Creation Care Collaboration

On November 21,2016 representatives from parishes, the Archdiocese, Marquette University, Marquette HS/Laudato Si' Project, City of Milwaukee, and Catholics for Peace and Justice/Waukesha County Green Team met to begin discussing how we can bring the content of Laudato Si’ more fully alive and prominent in our parishes and our community. Lots of good information was shared and connections made. The next meeting is Jan 13 at 12 noon. Contact Rob Shelledy at the Archdiocese to get on the information/invitation list. If you are interested in building a Creation Care ministry in your parish, connect with this group.


What is COP21?

More than two decades ago, members of the United Nations met in Rio de Janeiro for the “Earth Summit.” At this extraordinary gathering, attendees agreed on some basics about climate change and how to tackle its human causes. 

This agreement is called the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, or “UNFCCC.” In it, 196 nations agreed to meet every year to fashion a treaty on how to keep the planet from warming to dangerous levels, and how in the meantime to help affected people. These nations are “parties” to the UNFCCC agreement. 
Together we call this gathering of 196 nations the Conference of Parties, or COP for short. 

The COP has been meeting every year since 1994. This November 30, they will convene for the 21st time. And that’s where we get the term COP21

Why is COP21 Important?  



PARISH RESOURCES

Laudato Si' Praise Be! Encyclical on Care for Creation from Pope Francis




Join the Force for Creation - Become a Laudato Si’ “Animator”. Animators promote the Laudato Si message to help turn it into action in their local communities, whether that be a parish, school, religious congregation, lay group, youth organization, retreat center, Boy Scout troop, or more. Learn More Here

PARISH RESOURCES

Global Catholic Climate Movement Advent Resource Kit

Season of Creation Sept 1 - Oct 4


Eco-Parish Guide for Catholic Parishes.

Join the Eco-Parish Global Network

10 Things a Catholic Diocese Can Do To Promote Care for Our Common Home 

USCCB Laudato Si' Discussion Guide 

Catholic Climate Covenant Feast of St. Francis Program

USCCB Resource for Liturgy, Preaching and Taking Action

USCCB Care for Creation Scripture 

Scripture Bulletin Insert

Acts of Mercy for Our Common Home


VIDEOS

Why Climate Change Is a Moral Issue

Laudato Si’ Vatican Video

CRS Care for Creation Video 



ORGANIZATIONS

Catholic Climate Covenant 

Global Catholic Climate Movement

Interfaith Earth Network Milwaukee


CREATING CHANGE

Divest-Reinvest Catholic Toolkit

Twelve Priority Measures to Save Energy at Your Church

Looking for Water