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Greening Sacred Spaces

Greening Sacred Spaces

Greening Sacred Spaces (GSS) is our longest-running program. A practical program, GSS assists faith communities with both the educational and spiritual dimensions of greening as well as the “how to” side of audits, retrofits and generally reducing a faith community’s footprint.

We have developed a number of resources to help faith groups become community leaders in working towards a more sustainable future for all. Click on the links below to find out more about our:

 
Visit your local chapter page or contact your local animator to find out about upcoming events in your area and to discuss your faith community's needs and how Faith & the Common Good: Greening Sacred Spaces can help.

Sign up for our local and/or national newsletter for program and event updates.

St. Anselm’s Ecology Group: How Our Church’s Green Team Evolved

Guest post by Marlie Whittle, St. Anselm’s Ecology Group in Toronto.

St Anselms green team with certificate
GSS Certification Team

In 2015, Pope Francis wrote an encyclical called Laudato Si: Praise be to You. This encyclical was a call to environmental action from the highest authority of the Catholic Church. Since 2015, many Catholic orders, churches and people have found different ways to respond to this call. I have had the privilege of being on St. Anselm’s Church’s ‘Green Team’ for over a year. We call ourselves St. Anselm’s Ecology Group and in the past three years our team has grown from two parishioners to 13!

Youth “Native Plant” Garden: Plaque Presentation at IMO

IMO Plaque Presentation on November 17 2017

At Faith & the Common Good, we were fortunate to receive an Ontario 150 grant. It provided the opportunity for youth of different religions and cultural backgrounds, to create 8 native plant gardens in 3 regions this spring; Ottawa, Halton, and Toronto. Toronto FCG chapter chose 3 faith sites: Shaarei Shomayim Congregation, Manor Road United Church, and the International Muslims Organization of Toronto (IMO).

St. John’s Meadow Cemetery Quiet Garden

St. John's Meadow Cemetery

***French version follows – La version en français suit***

St. John’s Anglican Church South March, is a small, well-maintained limestone church on the periphery of Ottawa, Canada that was first established in 1832. It is located on a large parcel of land and has an adjacent heritage cemetery as well as a newer one. Now it is located in the miSt. John's Meadow Cemetery Garden htm_html_2d8230b840e4df43dst of suburban Kanata. Large sugar maples were planted in the old cemetery many years ago and they help to create a park land that is a peaceful place to walk. Many of the graves are lovingly tended.  

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Resources

Greening Sacred Spaces DVD

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This engaging and instructive 5-part DVD highlights different aspects of Greening Sacred Spaces.

The first part is a 12-minute segment, Reasons to Green, offering insightful interviews with faith leaders from eight religious traditions on why people of faith need to address the ecological crisis and how their faith communities are responding.

The Renewing the Sacred Balance section offers stories of how people from different faith traditions are working to change their ways of life to be more ecologically sustainable.

The Greening Sacred Spaces section, in both an 18 minute and 5 minute version, point to a variety of ways that faith communities have begun to green their buildings. These are divided into light, medium, and deep green options.

The final section, Auditsprovides a 5-minute tour of how a professional auditor conducts an energy audit of your religious building.

 Order the Greening Sacred Spaces DVD($12)

Steps to Greening

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Steps to Greening is intended to give you and your faith community a quick overview of what is possible as you plan to green your sacred spaces and a ‘path’ to follow.

Download PDF (must be logged in)

The Green Rule Poster

The Green Rule

Faith & the Common Good derived the Green Rule poster from the classic Golden Rule found in major faith traditions.

“Do unto the Earth as you would have it do unto you.”

Each Green Rule was chosen from the great texts of the world’s major religions and spiritual philosophies. The texts all acknowledge the natural world as an essential phenomenon through which we may better come to know the divine and our oneness with it.

Order the Green Rule Poster ($15 folded; $20 rolled ON/QC; $25 Canada)

For bulk sales and international orders, email resources@faithcommongood.org to ask for a quote *before* placing order.

See also:

Green Rule study guide (orderable with poster)

How to use the Green Rule (PDF download)

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