The Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, one block from the historic Morristown Green, has decided to go green.
For the next two years, the church will seek certification from GreenFaith, a national interfaith environmental organization based in Highland Park.
“What I love about this program is its comprehensiveness. It’s not just about recycling or using compact-fluorescent light bulbs– this is about taking our commitment to ‘do justice’ seriously, as Redeemer has done so well throughout its history,” said Redeemer’s rector, the Rev. Cynthia Black, in a statement.
The focus will be inward and outward, addressing the church’s use of energy while also supporting local environmental leaders and working to help the poor who often are most affected by pollution, according to the church.
Green Faith, established in 1992, has promoted sustainable practices within the faith community, helping the Sun Farm Network install 25 solar arrays at 25 religious institutions across the state. More details follow:
FROM CHURCH OF THE REDEEMER:
Church near the Green goes green
Church of the Redeemer, located on South Street just one block away from the historic Green in Morristown, NJ, is launching a major environmental initiative to “Go Green” by participating in a rigorous two-year environmental certification program sponsored by GreenFaith, a national interfaith environmental organization (www.greenfaith.org).
The Rev. Cynthia L. Black, Rector of Redeemer, will publicly announce the church’s participation in the GreenFaith program on December 11 in a brief ceremony on the church’s front lawn. As a visual symbol of the church’s environmental commitment, the youth group has constructed an 8-foot lighted peace symbol from recycled plastics collected from parishioners and the local community. Paul Miller, Morristown’s Sustainability Director, will be on hand to wish the church well in its initiative.
The GreenFaith Certification Program is the first environmental leadership program of its kind in the country designed exclusively for religious institutions. To become certified as a “Green Sanctuary,” Church of the Redeemer will address environmental issues and take action holistically both within its walls and by reaching out into the community.
Looking inward, the church will conduct eco-themed worship services and offer adult and youth religious education about the environment, as well as multi-generational programs designed to enhance members’ spiritual connection to the earth. It will also implement a rigorous set of environmental stewardship measures aimed at improving the church’s use of and relationship to food, water, energy, transportation, waste, toxics and grounds maintenance.
Focusing on the community, the church will seek to develop working relationships with area environmental justice leaders, aiding their ongoing efforts to improve the plight of poor communities that often absorb the brunt of local environmental degradation in the form of toxic waste dumps and incinerators located in their vicinity. Redeemer will also actively engage in legislative advocacy efforts to promote responsible and meaningful environmental legislation. Church members also plan to reach out to other local religious and community organizations to jointly plan sustainability initiatives.
Rev. Black comments, “What I love about this program is its comprehensiveness. It’s not just about recycling or using compact-fluorescent light bulbs– this is about taking our commitment to “do justice” seriously, as Redeemer has done so well throughout its history.”
The Church of the Redeemer, located at 36 South Street, Morristown, is a Christian liberation community in the Episcopal tradition, serving the people of Morristown and beyond for more than 150 years. Sunday services are at 8:00 (prayer book) and 10:30 am (inclusive language). As part of its practice of radical hospitality, the church provides space to the Community Soup Kitchen of Morristown, the Eric Johnson House (part of NJ AIDS Services), a number of 12 step groups, and Empty Bowl Zendo. To learn more, please visit: www.redeemermorristown.org