OMA Banner

Facebook Like

OMA Joins 350.org at Climate Change Rallies

We have an opportunity if not a responsibility to join together with our UCC sisters and brothers in this endeavor. Being on the ground at our sites we know first-hand the need to stand up in solidarity.

The following is an excerpt from an article originally published on the UCC.org website. Written by Connie Larkman, Managing Editor & News Director at United Church of Christ.

"Building on the momentum of the People’s Climate March, the United Church of Christ is endeavoring to build a partnership centered on climate justice with the like-minded people of 350.org. That framework, a pilot project just announced this week, invites green teams of the congregations of the UCC to affiliate with the grassroots organization that began mobilizing in 2008 to create a climate movement that “holds our leaders accountable to the realities of science and the principles of justice.”

“Strength and vitality are found when ‘I’s’ become a ‘we.’ A march (like the People’s Climate March) is a tangible way in which a bunch of ‘I’s’ become a ‘we,'” said the Rev. Brooks Berndt, UCC environmental justice minister. “The task before us now is to build and strengthen that ‘we’ through effective partnerships.”

A partnership with 350.org on the local level in communities around the country just seemed to make sense to Berndt, to the organization, and to the Rev. Jim Antal, one of the denomination’s longtime leaders in climate justice.

“By partnering with 350.org, church green teams will discover new passion rooted in activism and engagement,” said Antal. “While churches often recognize God’s call for the church to have a voice in the public square, partnering with 350.org will provide occasions for speaking truth to power.”

So has Meighan Pritchard, a UCC environmental justice curriculum trainer and staff member at Prospect UCC in Seattle.

People should contact Berndt if they want to be part of this initial pilot endeavor. “I want to know who is doing this and learn from their experiences as we consider ways to broaden and further this partnership,” he said.

“All the ongoing attention to climate issues,” Pritchard said, “especially with the risk that we may pull out of the Paris Climate Treaty, has certainly fired people up to get involved as never before.”

“I think affiliating with 350 or working with an already existing affiliate is a logical next step for green teams that realize an enormous problem like climate change necessitates the building of a broad and active movement,” Berndt continued. “The best way to be part of such vital work is to join an organization that is already doing it and has excelled at it.”