To All Who Love God’s Creation and Hope for the Future

Fresh Air

As we enter Easter Season, the time when Christians celebrate the greatest mystery of our faith, we find ourselves poised to meet the greatest challenge in humanity’s history. Climate change is here, it is real and it is progressing. As a species, we have failed to respond to the prophetic voices of our scientists and can no longer prevent very serious and frightening consequences of our over-consumption of our planet home. Easter Season for Christians is the time between Easter Sunday and Pentecost during which we find renewal in the promise…

PHW Community Hero: Helen Livingston of Scotland County

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Meet one of our community leaders: Helen Livingston of Scotland County. I was able to get her to tell us a bit about herself and her community involvement. Joy: Ms. Helen, could you tell us a bit of a bio of your life and ways that you have contributed to the community? Helen: I grew up in Laurinburg, both sides of my family having been in the area for generations. My parents instilled in me a love of nature, and I appreciate the clean air and water that are so valuable in…

A Chance to Enjoy God’s Creation

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Last week Rev. Sally Bingham, founder of Interfaith Power & Light, simply asked: “Do you remember what it was like to be a child and play in the great outdoors?” This question came in her response to the release of the first comprehensive report produced by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) since 2007. The report warned us again of the devastating impacts of climate change, from increased public health risks, to threatened food and water supply, and worsening extreme weather events. Rev. Bingham shared her memories of listening to…

Healthy North Carolina 2020: Are We Gaining or Losing Ground?

Lighthouse

Healthy North Carolina 2020 is a health improvement plan for our state. It addresses a wide range of issues that impact our health, such as tobacco use, physical activity and nutrition, mental health, and injury and violence. Optimal goals have been established in each of these areas, with a 2020 deadline for achieving them. So where does North Carolina currently stand? Out of the 40 original health goals, we’ve achieved 3 of them, 13 have improved but are not at the set target, 21 have gotten worse, 2 were not…

Fifth Sunday in Lent: Poverty & Creation

A Time to Mend

In recognition of our faithful call and of this time in history, the Council’s annual Lenten guide focuses on poverty and the ways we can respond to our sisters and brothers of low-income. We hope you and your family will find cause for reflection and inspiration for action as you share this intergenerational resource together. May we continue building as a nation toward a place where God’s love is felt by everyone through the meeting of basic human needs and the extension of true opportunities for progress. Click here to…

Out of the Ashes – Creation Care?

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Living in harmony with the world of nature has never been all that simple for us humans. One could say that the reported misadventures of a couple of folks named Adam and Eve, who had it made until they were laid low by pride, showed as much from the get-go. Our species unquestionably has a privileged status, but if we let that go to our heads, we’re asking for trouble. We have the intelligence and the power to take advantage of nature’s bounty for our own purposes – food, clothing,…

Climate Activists Must Heed the Lessons of North Carolina

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Joe Wainio begins his wonderful article on TruthOut, Climate change activists should look to North Carolina for lessons on how to build a broad and diverse movement powerful enough to challenge the corrupt status quo on several fronts. Single-issue organizing won’t do. To make a difference in our current political climate takes massive numbers of people, and so far the environmental movement has not drawn the numbers and diversity needed. In the article, he captures what we have been building in our North Carolina “Forward Together Movement.” He concludes, That’s…

Allowing Access to Church Facilities to Promote Physical Activity: Free Webinar

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Partners in Health and Wholeness recently teamed up with the NC Division of Public Health, Faithful Families and Voices into Action to assess what is currently happening around shared use agreements in faith communities across the state and to identify opportunities for growth. Please join us on Friday, March 28 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. to learn how your congregation can provide increased opportunities for physical activity in your local community by allowing outside groups and/or individuals to use your facilities. The webinar will cover the following topics: The importance…

April Event Celebrates Legacy of Lex Mathews

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The Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina is sponsoring a “Day of Diocesan Story-Telling and Celebration,” focusing on Lex Mathews’ time as Director of Christian Social Ministries from 1975 until 1985. Longtime activists with the NC Council of Churches will remember Lex’s many involvements with the Council. I’m proud to say that he and I were unindicted co-conspirators on several adventures, though it was all before I was with the Council. I came to NC in 1978 to work in the social justice office of the Baptist State Convention and, pretty…

A Time to Mend: A Social Justice Study for Lent

A Time to Mend

Economic circumstances too often define us. How much we do or do not earn can put us on a path that either buffers our failures or tempers our successes. The people who make the least amount of money have the fewest opportunities to succeed, no matter how much they work or how hard they study.

For Christians, the biblical calls to justice and to providing for the least of these are foundations of our faith. At the same time, we as a nation mark this year the 50th anniversary of the war on poverty. Under different circumstances we might celebrate the milestone, but there is still too much to be done.

Gardening With a Purpose

Butternut on the vine

Recently, I received a notice from a local community garden organizer about a grant opportunity sponsored by a fertilizer company. I shared it with my e-mail group and found one response, in particular, intriguing. Within this email, a local community leader expressed the importance of gardens, eating healthy, and making healthy local food accessible to the community, while being environmentally responsible. She continued to express the importance of our actions lining up with our values. She concluded that corporate sponsorship of funding for community gardens brought up questions of justice…

Photos from HKonJ 2014

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p1010651 ◄ Back Next ► Picture 1 of 79 The Council helped organize a Service of Repentance and Consecration in front of the General Assembly Building prior to the Moral March and HKonJ People’s Assembly held earlier this month in Raleigh. The photos above were taken throughout the day as Council friends, volunteers and staff came together with people from throughout North Carolina and the nation.

HKonJ 2014 — Moral March and People’s Assembly

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A cross-section of North Carolinians and progressives from other states flooded downtown Raleigh on Saturday as part of HKonJ 2014. Longtime activists from across the state walked with college students, parents pushed young children in strollers, old friends renewed acquaintances, and new relationships were forged. The day began with an interfaith Service of Repentance and Consecration, organized by the Council for lay leaders and clergy. About 50 people gathered in front of the General Assembly Building before heading to Shaw University to take part in Shabbat services conducted by area Jewish leaders and…

Pray with Us on Friday, March with Us on Saturday

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Join the NC NAACP, the North Carolina Council of Churches, and coalition partners for this weekend’s Moral March on Raleigh and HKonJ People’s Assembly. Events include: A Mass Meeting and Worship Service Friday, February 7, 7 p.m. Abundant Life Christian Center 4400 Old Poole Road, Raleigh Keynote speaker is Bishop W. Darin Moore, Presiding Prelate of the Western Episcopal District and the NC Conference of the Eastern North Carolina Episcopal District, with NC NAACP President Rev. Dr. William J. Barber presiding. The service is open to people of all faiths…

HKonJ 2014 — Saturday, February 8

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It’s now just four weeks until this year’s HKonJ People’s Assembly. There is nothing more important for people of faith to do this winter as we work for prophetic social justice than to attend HKonJ and encourage  others to join us. Participants will assemble at Shaw University at 9:30 a.m. with the march set to begin at 10:30 a.m. I hope to see you there.  

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