A Green Sanctuary
Being a Green Sanctuary is one of the ways we work toward a vision of healthier, more sustainable future.
The UUFM became an accredited Green Sanctuary in June 2015. Our continued commitment is expressed in the statement that was unanimously approved by our congregation in 2015, prior to our accreditation:
As part of our mission to “nurture the earth”, we, the members of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Mankato, pledge to continue to live out our Unitarian Universalist principles, including the Seventh Principle, “Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.” We will continue to incorporate Seventh Principle values and practices into our worship services, celebrations and faith development programs; support efforts to improve our environmental impact; and affirm and promote programs to raise awareness of behaviors that affect the health and sustainability of the living Earth.
As an accredited Green Sanctuary, we commit to four practices, grounded in Unitarian Universalist principles:
- Environmental Justice: In this area, food justice has been our main focus. We continue to work toward food justice locally by bi-annually producing a pamphlet outlining access to food resources in our community in collaboration with local organizations and congregations. We also continue to host and assist with the free Sunday evening meal provided by Food Not Bombs, October through April. The meals are made with rescued food ingredients. In addition, our garden space and continued evaluation of our grounds for spaces for edibles or other non-turf plantings provides food for our community, improves ecological diversity, and helps protect the adjacent river. In these ways, we are able to address human and environmental needs at the same time.
- Worship and Celebration: As we work together towards a cleaner, more just and sustainable world, worship inspires our work and reminds us of what is most sacred and most true. We are committed to offering occasional services on topics pertaining to sustainable living and environmental justice during our year as well as seasonal celebrations.
- Faith Development: Our workshops and programs for all ages shape attitudes and build practices that are sustainable and spiritually-grounded. We have offered book discussions, documentary film showings, workshops, presentations and discussion groups and will continue with these efforts as opportunities arise.
- Sustainable Living: We treat the world more gently by using fewer resources and being mindful of the choices we make, both as a congregation and as households. We continue to use green cleaning and recycled paper products, compost kitchen scraps, use cloth napkins, offer opportunities for our congregation to expand their personal recycling efforts by hosting Terracycle brigades, and looking for further ways to reduce our energy consumption.
We invite all who share these values to join us on this journey of connection, sustainability, and hope. Contact us to get involved.
Commit2Respond is a coalition of Unitarian Universalists and other people of faith and conscience working for climate justice.