Giving Thanks Toolkit

Posted on 17. Nov, 2017 by .



Beatitudes for Stewards of Earth (by Father Ed Eschweiler)

  • Blessed are they who reverence all created things as sacred: in God’s eyes, all creation is good.
  • Blessed are they who understand that creation is like a beautiful tapestry, with every strand depending on others.
  • Blessed are they who see the beauty of Earth as a reflection of the beauty of God, who creates it.
  • Blessed are they who do not waste or spoil Earth’s resources, which are for everyone, even those not born yet.
  • Blessed are they who reverence the air–the breath of God and the Spirit of our life.
  • Blessed are they who reverence the life-giving waters that sustain the Earth’s climate and nourish Earth’s inhabitants.
  • Blessed are they who reverence the soil that supports our homes and our footsteps and yields abundant harvests.
  • Blessed are they who reverence the trees and other plants that call down the rains, stabilize the soil, and freshen the air.
  • Blessed are they who reduce what they consume, re-use what they can, and recycle what they can no longer use.
  • Blessed are they who praise God the Creator in their reverent and gentle use of all things on Earth.


Ten Minutes

Register for Practical and Proven Ways to Inspire Creation Care in your Community Webinar: Join us to hear from representatives from the Dioceses of Toledo (OH) and Burlington (VT), as well as Catholic Relief Services, on how you can energize your communities to gather, learn, and act together to care for creation.  This is a must-attend webinar for all Creation Care Teams!

Earth Day 2018: Yes, it’s time to start thinking of Earth Day 2018. Next year’s Earth Day program will be available in mid to late February. Taking inspiration from Pope Francis’, we are focusing on counteracting the “throwaway culture” that permeates our societies. Join us and celebrate Earth Day with a one-hour educational program and the beginning of a Reduce Waste-Grow Community Challenge. Register now to receive the free Earth Day resource in your inbox as soon as it is available next February.


Support US Funding and Participation in the Global Effort to Address Climate Change
Please write your legislator, asking her or him to support Congressional funding of $10m for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Funding for these agencies is critical for continued international cooperation on climate change.

The Trump Administration has sought to eliminate our nation’s funding contribution of $10m to the UNFCCC and IPCC within the federal budget.  The fate of this contribution is in the hands of Congress.  The Senate has voted to reinstate this funding, which the U.S. has been providing since 1992.  The Senate and House are deliberating on the issue this week.  NOW is the time to urge your legislator to support the Senate’s $10m allocation to fund the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC)


Half Day

Making connections with local groups is vital for your work as caretakers of God’s creation. These connections will prove invaluable as you plan programs and seek local expertise. Plan to schedule a visit/conversation with some local environmental activists in your community.

IPL: Have you connected with your State Interfaith Power and Light (IPL) affiliate? There are 38 IPL affiliate groups and they are a fantastic resource for your Creation Care Team. The main mission of IPL is to “be faithful stewards of Creation by responding to global warming through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.” Give your local IPL a call or send them an email. Invite them to present to your group. Check out some of the films and posters that the national IPL has available.

Local Environmental Groups: Do some research and discover which environmental groups are active in your community. There are probably some local groups or an affiliate/chapter of a national environmental organization. Schedule a time to have them present to your CCT about what issue(s) are important and salient in your community. If you need help finding such groups or need some contacts, please email me and I’ll be glad to help.



Laudato Si’ Resource: Check out this excellent Laudato Si’ Creation Care Guide from the Creation Care Team of Catholic Diocese of Columbus. They took inspiration from the An Action Plan for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta and created an excellent resource for use by parishes and schools.  Lots of good ideas available!

Green Thanksgiving IdeasCool Harvest, an Interfaith Power and Light project, has some wonderful ideas to help your family, as well as your faith community, celebrate Thanksgiving in a greener more sustainable manner. Ideas include: Host a cool harvest potluck, eat locally grown, choose organic and humanely raised, eat less meat, reduce packaging, and leave fewer leftovers. Go here for tips and to download a Low-Carbon Thanksgiving Guide.

Click here for more “green” Thanksgiving tips.

Holiday Exchange Project for a More Sustainable Christmas
Sponsor an exchange of holiday items called “What was Once Old is New Again”. This is usually a very popular activity where many items can find new homes rather than go to a landfill.

During the first two weeks of December, invite parishioners/students to donate Christmas cards, ornaments, Christmas lights, decorations, wrapping paper, and other holiday items they no longer want to the exchange. Designate an area in the parish or school where people can leave items anytime during the week, including before Mass.

Advertise the program in your Sunday bulletin and on the church webpage the last week of November.

For the first two consecutive weeks in December, arrange the items for display on tables, prior to the Saturday/Sunday Masses.  The items are left on display and are available for “adoption” after Mass, with representatives of your CCT on hand to answer questions or help box items.  Items are free, although an offering box may be placed on the table.

After the last Mass, items are stored until the following Saturday/Sunday. Each week, members of your team will need to set up and dismantle the display tables.

Leftover items should be donated to a local charity.

More/Leave a Comment

Introducing the #PowerKit

Posted on 09. Nov, 2017 by .


Fom Presente.org –

The PowerKit is a way to make your choices count. It’s a first of its kind community subscription from Presente that aims to fulfill the wishes of our ancestors that we thrive, not just survive every day. 

We strive to be accountable to our community — your values and needs — so the only constraints on what we can do are your dreams. Presente aims to change its financial strategy to be primarily funded by community members like you and dedicated to movement-building, culture, and action. And the PowerKit is how Presente holds itself more accountable to our community.

Get your October PowerKit today to bring joy and beauty into your life, while honoring our ancestors.

What’s in a PowerKit? Each kit will be uniquely tailored to the month and the issues our communities face and will include pieces of art from Latinx artists, swag from social justice organizations, and useful tools to help navigate your everyday life. All this while supporting a sustainable, thriving future for independent, powerful organizing.

What does this have to do with my ancestors? Our October Dia de Los Muertos themed PowerKit honors our ancestors’ deepest desires for our well-being. Our ancestors wanted us to live in ways where our choices reflect our values. We honor our roots. We honor how we are all connected. For Dia de Los Muertos we offer items that bring our culture alive.

Today is an opportunity to make a choice that reflects your values of a fair economy, self-determination, passing on cultural legacies, and making every day a piece of art.

The October Power Kit includes roasted coffee from Chiapas via our partners at Sin Fronteras Coffee. We choose to include coffee because it is a direct connection to our Latinx diaspora. We honor those who produce the coffee, their hands touching the beans, the plants, and the soil before it makes it into our mug in the morning. We honor those farmers that have decided to run small batch grown coffee that doesn’t result in deforestation or worker exploitation and continues to celebrate culture into production. We accept and support their version of an alternative, humane economy that continues to bring joy to people all over the world in the morning, in gossiping with friends, in writing your best piece of poetry, in making it through the day.

Our PowerKit will also include a specially designed art sticker. A sticker is ultimately the people’s art. It can be used by children, adults, and it is free from boundaries. Like our culture it’s an adhesive that we can put anywhere, that comes with us everywhere. We are people of the sun and we adorn what we wear, where we go, and the things we use with our artwork. Our sticker was created by Francis Mead.

Bring people’s art back into your home and buy the PowerKit today.

Finally, our PowerKit includes a postcard size art piece with a velvet finish. Migration is beautiful. Humans are meant to soar not to be caged. Humans are meant to dream bigger and fly over hurdles. Humans are meant to come together. Our ancestors and cultures remind us how much we have in common and how we all journeyed to a land, a place, to create a home and a family. Our postcard was created by Jess X Chen. The sticker and postcard were commissioned by our friends at CultureStrike and Mobilize the Immigrant Vote (M.I.V.) for the “Until We Are All Free” initiative.

Your support of the PowerKit is an act of courage. This is the prototype Kit, testing our ability to build financial stability through forming deeper connections with our members. Donating to this Kit is a chance to show that you believe that alternative economies can and should exist. You believe that the world can change with your hands. You believe that every day should be a living piece of art.

Soar with us to a new financial and cultural pathway, by supporting Presente and buying the PowerKit.

It was once said that all of life can be art. How we live, how we dress, how we eat, how we laugh — these are our opportunities to create art in the world. We believe that we can bring art into our everyday life in a way that supports fair economies and keeps us accountable to our community.

Let’s use our everyday choices to support our lives as masterpieces.


More/Leave a Comment

Teaching Tolerance toolkit

Posted on 02. Nov, 2017 by .


Charlottesville. Las Vegas. Standing Rock. Some teachers are hesitant to unpack and discuss these challenging events with their students because it feels too overwhelming and upsetting. And there’s pressure from their administration and parent community to “stick to the curriculum.”

YES! Magazine has provided a toolkit to help teachers and parents start to address these topics with your children:

Suggested below are steps to a thoughtful and meaningful discussion with your students about the protest in Charlottesville—plus related issues of media literacy, race, and hate. Choose what is appropriate for your class.

  1. Have students complete a pre-survey (optional)
  2. Choose at least one YES! article and one outside article for a robust compare and contrast
  3.  Use the discussion questions—or craft your own—to gauge your students’ understanding and opinions.
  4.  Have students complete a post survey (optional)
  5. Explore curriculum if you’d like to dive deeper


Reading Materials

Outside Articles

A Guide to the Charlottesville Aftermath(The New York Times)

Fear of “violent left” preceded events in Charlottesville (The Washington Post)

Charlottesville Survivor: There’s No Question, This Was Terrorism (Truthout)

Discussion Questions

No doubt, there is lots to discuss about what happened in Charlottesville, and why it happened. Here are a few questions to help you dive deeper into the protest’s bigger issues—media literacy, race, bias, hate—and how they impact your students.

  1. If you could speak with someone who participated in the Unite the Right protest, what would you tell them? What questions would you ask?
  2. Why is it important to gather information from multiple sources when trying to understand contentious issues, such as Charlottesville?
  3. Is there racial tension in your community or school? How do students, teachers, and the administration address race at your school?



More/Leave a Comment

Catholic Climate Covenant Toolkit

Posted on 20. Oct, 2017 by .


Catholic Climate Covenant has provided us with a tool that only takes ten minutes, and can help us better take care of our Earth:

Take a few minutes to calculate your carbon footprint. This will give you a good understanding of your individual/family ecological impact. Then, you may wish to consider buying carbon offsets, especially to offset air travel.  There are many sites where you can purchase carbon offsets to reduce your carbon footprint.  A couple of sites are here and here.

More/Leave a Comment

Immigration Resources

Posted on 28. Sep, 2017 by .


Provided by sharethejourney.org –

These educational and pastoral resources— including prayers, activities, videos, and Church teaching— can help communities to support refugees and immigrants in the U.S. and around the world in a variety of ways.


click here to access full web page

More/Leave a Comment