Presbyterian Church (USA)
A description of the partnership between PC(USA) and GreenFaith
GreenFaith is pleased to collaborate with the Presbyterian Church (USA) to enroll Presbyterian churches in the GreenFaith Certification Program. This unique program helps houses of worship become environmental leaders, reduce their operating expenses, and attract new members.
To launch the collaboration, GreenFaith is underwriting 50% of the tuition of 10 PC(USA) congregations from Maryland/Washington DC, North Carolina, and Minnesota.
Webinar for Interested Church Leaders
GreenFaith offered a free webinar on February 25th, 2013, so that interested church leaders could learn more about this opportunity. See this page for the webinar recording and PowerPoints.
Why the Certification Program?
“I'm very excited about this,” said Rebecca Barnes-Davies, Associate for Environmental Ministries at PC(USA). “The program is an avenue for deep congregational revitalization. It is holistic, and GreenFaith supports participating congregations very well.”
The GreenFaith Certification Program requires participating churches to ‘green’ their buildings and grounds, develop relationships with environmental justice advocacy organizations and interfaith partners, and to integrate creation care into education and worship. According to Barnes-Davies, “Whether churches are just getting started, or have done environmental work for years, the Certification Program will help them take their efforts to the next level.”
Upon completing the Program, the churches will be certified as GreenFaith Sanctuaries and will contribute to strengthening PC(USA)’s environmental ministry.
How Does my Church Apply?
The next application Deadline May 1st
Presbyterian Church (USA) and GreenFaith will welcome the first Presbyterian churches into the Certification Program in May 2013. The 50% tuition discount offers churches the chance to enroll for a one-time fee of $375-$1000, depending on church budget size. Churches interested in applying should contact Program director Stacey Kennealy for more information.
What Support Does a Participating Church Receive?
GreenFaith provides extensive support to participating churches, based on over 20 years of experience in the religious-environmental field:
- Six webinars
- An online center with over 200 resources
- One-on-one feedback and coaching
- Support via phone and email
- Connections to a network of congregations that share best practices and success stories on-line.
PC(USA) will provide Presbyterian-specific resources which will enable participating churches to give a distinct Presbyterian identity to their environmental ministry.
What Kinds of Activities are Involved in the Program?
When churches begin the program, they audit their facilities and programs using templates that GreenFaith provides, and create an action plan. They ‘green’ their facilities, saving energy and water, using non-toxic cleaning and maintenance practices, increasing recycling, and offering healthy, sustainable food, among other steps. They conduct environmentally-themed worship services and education for children, teens and adults. They advocate for a healthier environment for vulnerable communities. They conduct interfaith programming, and share their progress with the media. As a result, they save money, achieve significant environmental projects, and experience the revitalization that comes from a deep commitment to caring for Creation. Learn more about the requirements of the GreenFaith Certification Program.