Beyond political commentary or church affiliation a new movement is coming from the pulpit, through the congregations and out to the community. Color it green.
What has been traditional skepticism between religion and science is now being rethought and identified in churches across the Southeast. The mission is engaging congregations in understanding the relationship of faith and science in the necessity of establishing "green" awareness. In an effort to bring "the message of an earth that cannot last forever and that all are charged with the responsibility of taking care of it" full circle, the Interfaith Power and Light Movement in Atlanta is offering tips on low-energy care of church organs, kits for "green" holidays , energy efficient light bulbs, etc. Their efforts are sprouting chapters throughout Virginia, and North Carolina. The vision means environmental activism and with it, huge advances for the national movement.
"The greatest social movements of our time, from abolition to civil rights, didn't seem to take off until the religious community got involved" said Mark Ginsberg, the North Carolina chapter's outreach coordinator recently in an Associated Press article.
"This is a great example of a group, or organization understanding their collective mission and expanding on their vision for themselves and the world" cites Don Midgett, author of Mission and Vision Statements: Your Path to a Successful Business Future. It
reiterates the need for an on going review of what is their mission and what is reflected accurately in their vision."
Other groups are meeting as well. In Tennessee, Cool Congregations' members help each other by discussing the connection between faith and environment and bringing that understanding back to their houses of worship. Reverend Jim Deming, leader of the movement states "At some point we are going to be overwhelmed by demand (on the environment). In many ways, the Southeast has been behind, but we really can't wait. This is an immediate crisis."
"Faith and Science can be united in a common goal or mission, especially in today's community. Church mission and vision statements are no longer hidden or understood by only a select few" says Midgett. "They are out in the open where they can be communicated in a meaningful way, with the purpose of everyone associated with it working together for its implementation and attainment. Shared visions derive their power from the desire to connect our head with our heart and share the vision with others."