Green Team News & Updates

Next Meeting: Monday, Feb. 11, 7pm

Although winter seems to have finally set in, caring for God’s creation has been far from dormant in our congregation!

We are thankful to all of the Committees and Staff who are actively incorporating environmental stewardship into their ministries and work. A few highlights:

  • Fellowship & Congregation Care are “greening” their events in many ways: reducing disposable waste and plastics, minimizing food waste by donating leftover food to those in need, working with Property to repair the hot water source for the dishwasher, and advocating sustainable development through the ELCA Good Gifts Program.
  • The Altar Guild has filled their first Terracycle box, collecting al most 2,000 plastic communion cups over 5 months that will be rescued from the landfill and sent for recycling!
  • We also acknowledge the work of Social Ministry, Property, Sunday School and Youth Ministries, Worship and Music, Grounds Committee, and Staff.

The Green Team is also actively planning for Spring activities. During February, we will again be working with children from Sunday School/Youth Ministries to plant seeds for the Children’s Pollinator Garden Expansion.  Please be on the  lookout  for  work dates  in March and April, to volunteer helping prepare the garden bed and install the new plants (this year we’re excited to be incorporating milkweed and a biblical herb garden)! Dedication of the pollinator garden expansion and celebration of Earth Day is planned for Sunday, April 28.

In March and April, we will be kicking off a new program, the “ 4Rs: Reduce,Reuse, Recycle – and Rejoice!” (with credit for the title to author, Rebekah Simon-Peter). The purpose of this program is to encourage sustainable lifestyles in our congregation through personal commitments. Sunday School/Youth Group students will be provided with a “pledge” sheet of personal/ family commitments to take home, fill out and return. The commitments will be assigned point values, and prizes will be awarded to classes based on number of points. If we reach a certain total, a charitable donation will also be made to an environmentally focused non-profit. We hope everyone will actively support the youth, by embracing and making personal commitments through this program! Also, be on the lookout for a NJ Farmers Against Hunger gleaning event in early summer.

Finally, a reminder that copies of our seasonal Meatless Monday recipes are posted on the bulletin board. Please check them out, take one home and give it a try!

Eco-Friendly Products

Finding cleaning and other products that are safer for you, your family, and the environment should be easy — that’s why we developed our new Safer Choice label. We all play a role in protecting our families’ health and the environment. Products with the Safer Choice label help consumers and commercial buyers identify products with safer chemical ingredients, without sacrificing quality or performance.

More than 2,000 products currently qualify to carry the Safer Choice label. Safer Choice products are available for your home at retail stores and for use in facilities like schools, hotels, offices, and sports venues.

Safer Choice is EPA’s label for safer chemical-based products. Every chemical, regardless of percentage, in a Safer Choice- labeled product is evaluated through EPA’s rigorous scientific process and only the safest ingredients are allowed. For over 15 years, the program has labeled products that are safer for fami- lies, pets, workplaces, neighborhoods, and the environment. The label represents leadership in safer product formulation.

Safer Choice Products you can find at local stores:

  • Ecos
  • Green Works Honest
  • Method
  • Mrs. Meyers Seventh Generation Simple Green
  • Wegmans Advance

This handout is for informational purposes only and does not imply endorsement of any of the products or stores listed.