"All creation is the Lord’s, and we are responsible for the ways in which we use and abuse it. Water, air, soil, minerals, energy resources, plants, animal life, and space are to be valued and con- served because they are God’s creation and not solely because they are useful to human beings. God has granted us stewardship of creation. We should meet these stewardship duties through acts of loving care and respect." - The Natural World (UM Social Principles, Paragraph 160)
Climate change can seem like a problem too big to do anything about. Yet we are called to care for God's creation and to love our neighbors, next door and around the world. Since 2008, an annual average of 21.8 million people have been forcibly displaced by climate-related weather events, such as floods, wildfires, and extreme temperatures. These climate refugees often go on to experience humanitarian crises such as hunger, malnutrition, and conflict. While natural disasters may seem like random acts of God, the fact is that humans have played a huge role in the increasing number and severity of extreme weather events. The vast majority - 97 percent - of climate scientists agree that humans are responsible for global warming and the current condition of our planet.
What Can You Do?
- Learn more about what The United Methodist Church says about climate justice.
- Read the Social Principle on The Natural World here.
- The UM Social Principle on Global Climate Stewardship says, "We acknowledge the global impact of humanity’s disregard for God’s creation. Rampant industrialization and the corresponding increase in the use of fossil fuels have led to a buildup of pollutants in the earth’s atmosphere." Read the whole paragraph here.
- Read Climate Change and the Church's Response, Book of Resolutions #1035, here.
- Learn more about climate change and global warming.
- Use an online carbon footprint calculator to measure your household's emissions. Find one here.
- The United States is the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world, producing about 15% of the planet's Co2. China leads the way, emitting 30% of the world's carbon dioxide. Read more here.
- Sources of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions include transportation (28%), electricity (25%), industry (23%), commercial & residential (13%), and agriculture (10%). More details can be found here.
As United Methodists, we are people of prayer and action! Join in the movement towards more just and sustainable policies regarding the environment. Let your voice be heard!
- Join United Methodist Creation Justice Ministries
- Join United Women in Faith's Just Energy 4 All Campaign
- Tell U.S. Congress to make climate justice a priority
- Find your National legislators here
- Find your Ohio legislators here
- Consider these letter-writing tips
Connect with others who are already working to promote climate justice:
As United Methodists, we are a people of prayer, and prayer can be a powerful witness.
Prayer for Our Earth
O God of the poor,
help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives,
that we may protect the world and not prey on it,
that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction. Touch the hearts
of those who look only for gain
at the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,
to be filled with awe and contemplation,
to recognize that we are profoundly united
with every creature as we journey towards your infinite light.
(From "Prayer for Our Earth" by Pope Francis Encyclical)
- Creation Care Worship Resources
- Global Ministries & EPA Energy Star Workbook for Congregations
- United Methodist Creation Justice Monthly Tips
- Loving People and Planet in God's Name Study
- Bible Study on Environmental Sustainability
- Bible Study on Flooding & Climate Change
- A Non-Expert's Guide to Living More Sustainably
- 52 Ways to Care for Creation bulletin insert
- Earth Day Resources