Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Pipeline and Pie at St. Stephen's

Tomorrow evening is the forum about the proposed Keystone XL pipeline (aka Pipeline and Pie) at St. Stephen’s in Grand Island. This event is organized by the Green Team at St. Stephen’s as part of our stated mission: Drawing on Nebraska’s traditions of conservation and moved by Christian hope and purpose, we will engage in whatever learning, actions, and practices make us more caring stewards of God’s creation and better neighbors to the world’s other inhabitants.

As part of our work, we are trying to stay informed about the pipeline and the concerns that have been raised about it. The Rev. Dr. Kenneth Moore, Regional Minister of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Nebraska and Board Chair of Nebraska Interfaith Power and Light, will speak about why the issues around the proposed pipeline matter to people of faith. Jane Kleeb of BOLD Nebraska will share some general information about the proposed pipeline – what it is, what it would carry, where it would be built – and some of the concerns about the pipeline and its proposed route through the Sandhills and over the Ogallala aquifer. Randy Thompson, whose land is in the path of the proposed pipeline, will talk about his concerns as a landowner and conservationist. We will have time for questions and will continue our conversation over pie and coffee.

The St. Stephen’s Green Team is working toward GreenFaith certification for the parish, which includes a growing point for us: paying attention to environmental justice issues. The Episcopal Church and GreenFaith recently announced the beginning of a new cycle of the certification program in which Episcopal parishes can apply for subsidies to offset part of the cost of the program. Michael Schut, the economic and environmental affairs officer for the Episcopal Church, explains that the goals of the certification program include “supporting the development of faithful, strong environmental leadership; helping congregations learn to reduce their operating costs; and modeling creation care, spirituality and justice throughout a congregation's life and practice.”

Anyone with an interest in the Keystone XL pipeline (or in some good pie and conversation) is welcome to join us tomorrow evening at 7:30. Please come in through red doors on Cedar Street.

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