Environmental Justice at Saint Mark's
About the Creation Care Ministry
The Creation Care Ministry of Saint Mark’s Cathedral strives to faithfully address the crisis of climate change. As stewards of the life-giving goodness of God’s creation, we will work with the Saint Mark’s and broader world communities to educate ourselves and take action together to preserve our shared planet and sustain life for the generations to come. We recognize our commitment as a unique opportunity and responsibility in our time to address the many social justice issues tied to the climate crisis. And through engaging in collective action that makes an effective impact, we will grow into the joy of transcending our fears and sense of powerlessness around the issue of climate change.
Carbon Emissions Reduction
The Vestry has adopted the goal for the entire Saint Mark’s campus and community to have a net zero carbon footprint by the year 2030. We encourage parishioners at Saint Mark’s to sign up with the Episcopal Church Carbon Tracker at www.sustainislandhome.org, a tool to help our community measure its collective carbon footprint and take action to reduce that footprint.
Click here for more detailed instructions about how to use this resource. See the resources and recording from a Climate Conversation about the importance of reducing our household carbon footprints and ways to better use the Episcopal Church carbon tracker tool. Why is measuring your carbon footprint is important? Listen to this excellent podcast about why our collective actions really do make a difference!
The Creation Care ministry has researched several carbon offset programs and suggests that parishioners donate to the Carbon Offset Fund here at St. Mark’s when making offset contributions. These funds will then be directly passed through to either the Carbon Offset Cooperative Mission | The Episcopal Diocese of Olympia (ecww.org) or to COTAP.org.
We were delighted to learn recently that a group of elementary students from Alabama used our Creation Care Ministry webpage in their research to learn about steps they can take to become more eco-friendly at home. They also shared another site they found to help in this effort - “Guide to Going Green at Home" at https://couponfollow.com/research/home-green-guide. Check it out and know that people are connecting across the country to help care for our Earth.
For an update and more information about the Carbon Offset Cooperative Mission partnership between the Olympia Diocese and the Diocese of the Southern Philippines, view this short webinar here.
We recognize our commitment as a unique opportunity and responsibility in our time to address the many social justice issues tied to the climate crisis. And through engaging in collective action that makes an effective impact, we will grow into the joy of transcending our fears and sense of powerlessness around the issue of climate change. Saint Mark’s is a member of Earth Ministry (earthministry.org) and Earth Day NW 2020 (earthdaynw2020.org) If you are interested in being a part of this work at Saint Mark’s, please contact ministry co-leaders Marjorie Ringness or Kathy Minsch.
Creation Care Newsletter
The Creation Care Ministry sends out a special newsletter every two months. It is full of events, reflections, recommendations, and interesting information. Read the February 2023 issue here.
Sign up to receive future issues using this form (select "Creation Care" from the list of options), or, if you already receive emails from the Saint Mark's, click the "update profile" link at the very bottom any cathedral mass email, and follow the instructions.
The Creation Care Ministry meets on the third Tuesday of each month, via Zoom.
Email Marjorie Ringness for the link.
Creation Care Meeting Minutes
- Meeting May 16, 2023
- Meeting April 18, 2023
- Meeting March 21, 2023
- Meeting February 28, 2023
- Meeting January 17, 2023
- Meeting November 15, 2022
- Meeting October 18, 2022
- Meeting September 20, 2022
- Meeting June 21, 2022
For older meeting minutes please visit the Creation Care Ministry Meeting Archive Page.
Resources and Recommendations
View the Creation Care-related resolutions passed at the 2022 Convention of the Diocese of Olympia here.
CLICK HERE for a list of resources and recommendations commended to you by the Creation Care ministry team.
The Buzz: Facts about Bees - resource for the Beekeeper Ministry Forum, May 29, 2022
Tools to Spread Climate Activism - a flyer distributed at Cathedral Day 2022
SECOND THURSDAY OF THE MONTH, 6:30–7:30 P.M., online via Zoom
Looking for practical ways to reduce your impact on the environment? Saint Mark’s Creation Care Ministry is hosting Climate Conversations about everyday things in our lives. These monthly conversations are held on environmentally-friendly Zoom on the second Thursday evening of each month from 6:30–7:30 p.m.
Register to participate using this link. You can be part of any or all of these conversations with the same Zoom link each month. Learn more about upcoming conversations and find resources and video of past offerings here.
- JUNE 8, 2023: Practical Ideas to Use Renewable Energy
Talk of renewable energy such as wind and solar or reducing energy usage with heat pumps or other technology is all around us. Actually tapping into these solutions can seem hard. However, state and national initiatives have made it easier to access renewable power and use less energy. We’ll discuss practical solutions for solar panels in homes, accessing community solar, installing heat pumps, driving EVs and more. We’ll include information about grants and rebates for renewable energy too. Participants will have opportunities to share their experience and ideas.
- JULY 13, 2023: Changing our Daily Routine to Save the Planet
- AUGUST 10, 2023: Stay Stylish with Climate-friendly Clothing Choices
- SEPTEMBER 14, 2023: Simple Seattle Solutions to be a Voice for Conservation and Creation Care
- OCTOBER 12, 2023: Save Money by Caring for Creation
- NOVEMBER 9, 2023: Celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas with a Creation Care Mindset
- DECEMBER 14, 2023: Find Great Deals for Local Foods and Plant-Based Meals
Previous 2023 Climate Conversations — resources, slides and videos of past conversations may be found here.
- THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2023: Plan, Cook, and Eat Great Meals
- APRIL 11, 2023: Recycle
- MARCH 14, 2023: Reuse
- FEBRUARY 7, 2023: Reduce
- JANUARY 3, 2023: Advocacy for Systemic Change
2022 Climate Conversions — resources, slides and videos of past conversations may be found here.
- DECEMBER 6, 2022: Creation Care Perspectives on Shopping at Christmas Time
- NOVEMBER 1, 2022: Investing with Your Values
- OCTOBER 4, 2022: What you can do about Transportation
- SEPTEMBER 5, 2022: What you can do on the Carbon Tracker
- AUGUST 2, 2022: What you can do about Water
- JULY 5, 2022: What you can do about Energy
- JUNE 7, 2022: What you can do about Food
The COP27 U.N. Climate Change Conference
In November 2022 the Episcopal Church sent a delegation at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP27) in Sharm El Sheik, Egypt. The delegation include the Diocese of Olympia's Missioner for Climate Care and Climate Justice, John Kydd. John wrote a series of reports from the event, which can be found here.
One of the greatest achievements of the conference was the creation of the "Loss and Damage Fund," a development which Saint Mark's member Dr. Lisa Graumlich discussed over a year ago, in an article written during the COP26 Conference in Glasgow: "Loss and Damage: Why these two words hold the key to a just transition in a warming world."
Visit the Episcopal Creation Care Facebook page to see this very inspiring video report back from the delegation. More information about the denomination's work can be found here.
UPDATE: The Diocese of Olympia is hosting two online conversations, on Wednesday, April 5, and Wednesday, April 19, featuring John Kydd and Dr Lisa Graumlich among others, offering a report of the conference and connected the developments there to locals actions on the ground here. Learn more and find the link to register here.
Local, National, and Global Updates
A highlight of 2022 was the adoption of resolutions related to Creation Care at both the General Convention of the Episcopal Church (8 resolutions) in July and the Diocesan Convention of the Diocese of Olympia (2 resolutions) in October. The General Convention also included passage of the Mind of the House on Climate and Our Vocation In Christ from the House of Bishops.
Joint Message for the Protection of Creation
On September 7, 2021, three of the world's top Christian leaders—Pope Francis, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby—issued a press release and joint statement warning of the urgency of environmental sustainability, its impact on poverty, and the importance of global cooperation. Read the full statement here.