tagged w/ United Methodist News Service
This is the fifth of seven EarthKeeper columns being printed in northern Michigan newspapers about the planting of 12,000 trees across the Upper Peninsula.
This link is to the Mining Journal, the daily paper in Marquette, MI.
The trees were planted during the first two weeks of May 2009
The author is Rev. Jon Magnuson, EarthKeeper Initiative co-founder, campus pastor for Lutheran Campus Ministry at Northern Michigan University and the executive director of the non-profit Cedar Tree Institute in Marquette, MI.
The EarthKeeper columns and news stories appeared in numerous U.P. newspapers including the Marquette Mining Journal, the Escanaba Daily Press, the Iron Mountain Daily News, the Houghton Daily Mining Gazette, the St. Ignace News, the Marquette Monthly and the Ironwood Daily Globe.This is the fifth of seven EarthKeeper columns being printed in northern Michigan... more
Presbyterian EarthKeeper Jill Martin of Ford River Township in Delta County writes the fourth of seven columns about the environment and the interfaith Upper Peninsula (U.P.) EarthKeeper Tree Project that planted 12,000 trees across the Upper Peninsula in early May 2009.
The EarthKeeper columns and news stories appeared in numerous U.P. newspapers including the Marquette Mining Journal, the Escanaba Daily Press, the Iron Mountain Daily News, the Houghton Daily Mining Gazette, the St. Ignace News, the Marquette Monthly and the Ironwood Daily Globe.
Jill Martin is a Presbyterian EarthKeeper team member, an environmental scientist with Wilcox Professional Services in Escanaba and a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Escanaba.Presbyterian EarthKeeper Jill Martin of Ford River Township in Delta County writes the... more
Marquette, Michigan – During the first two weeks of May 2009, over 12,000 trees have been planted the interfaith Upper Peninsula EarthKeeper Team across a 400 miles area of northern Michigan and in Minocqua, Wisconsin thanks to volunteers at over 100 churches and temples.
The trees were planted near homes, camps, churchyards, schools, parks and many other places by thousands of volunteers from ten faith traditions.
Children of all ages helped make the project a success and underscored why its important to protect the environment - it's their future at stake.
The EarthKeepers handed out over 12,000 red pine and white spruce seedlings at over 100 churches and temples across northern Michigan.
This video details some of the planting, distribution and preparation for the 209 EarthKeeper Tree Project that started on Earth Day 2009 with the planting of a three-foot white spruce at Presque Isle Park along Lake Superior in Marquette, Michigan. Bishops and other EarthKeeper faith leaders blessed the tree as it was planted on a wooded hillside one day after a snowstorm.
In previous projects, the EarthKeeper Initiative has removed nearly 400 tons of hazardous waste from the environment - most of which was recycled - and involves the congregations of over 150 churches/temples from ten faith traditions in 50 communities, American Indian tribes, college students and other youth.
The EarthKeepers were founded in 1994 by Rev. Jon Magnuson, executive director of the non-profit Cedar Tree Institute in Marquette and Carl Lindquist, executive director of the Superior Watershed Partnership.
In 2004, the bishops and other faith leaders signed the original EarthKeeper Covenant - pledging to actively protect the environment and reach out to Native Americans. The religious communities include Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, United Methodist Church, Unitarian Universalist, Baha'i, Jewish, Zen Buddhist and the Quakers.
The group teams with Native American tribes including the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community (KBIC). Another major partner is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that sent representatives to the collections
From 2005-2007, the group of adults and youth held an annual EarthKeeper Clean Sweep each Earth Day during which over 20,000 northern Michigan residents turned in household hazardous waste at 20 free collections sites across a 400-mile area involving all corners of the pristine Upper Peninsula.
With a message of encouragement from their faith leaders, enthusiastic congregations turned out during three-hour collections:
In 2005, over 45 tons of pesticides, herbicides, lead-based paint, batteries and many other hazardous substances from northern Michigan homes was turned in by residents during the first clean sweep. Partners included landfills and local governments.
In 2006, over 320 tons of electronic waste was collected including computers, keyboards, hard drives, other computer related components, televisions and cell phones. Nine semi-trucks transported the vast majority of the electronics to a recycler in the Lower Peninsula.
In 2007, over one ton of pharmaceuticals was turned in including more than $500,000 in dangerous narcotics. Pharmacists and law enforcement agencies were among the clean sweep partners and staffed each of the collection sites as required by federal law. The drugs were properly disposed in high-tech EPA-approved incinerators.
In 2006, the faith leaders and the head of the KBIC tribe gathered for a news conference with college students to announce the creation of the Northern Michigan University EarthKeeper Student team. It was the first time these bishops and other faith leaders had been in the same room and many met for the first time.
http://www.cedartreeinstitute.orgMarquette, Michigan – During the first two weeks of May 2009, over 12,000 trees... more
Marquette, Michigan - The Upper Peninsula Earth Keepers announced several projects for the next year on Thursday night (Nov. 13, 2008) as they received the Michigan Sierra Club prestigious White Pine Award for past projects that included recycling hundreds of tons of hazardous waste, energy conservation programs and the protection of Lake Superior.
Numerous Earth Keeper Initiative (EKI) faith leaders, volunteers and student members accepted the award on Nov. 13 at a meeting of the Sierra Club U.P. Group.
The White Pine Award recognizes "a group outside of the Sierra Club which has been doing things to help protect the environment," said Dr. Jon Rebers, chair of the Sierra Club Central U.P. Group.
The U.P. Earth Keepers, involving the congregations of over 150 U.P. churches and temples, held three annual Earth Day collections at dozens of sites across northern Michigan that removed almost 370 tons of household hazardous waste from the environment.
Earth Keepers collected one ton of pharmaceuticals & $500,000 in narcotics in 2007; 320 tons of computers, televisions & electronics in 2006; and 45 tons of household hazardous waste like pesticides, herbicides, oil-based paint and car batteries. Most of the waste turned in by the public.
Earth Keepers held a 2007 energy summit that helped hundreds of Michigan homes and businesses become energy efficient & helped organize classical musicians to form the Boreal Chamber Symphony for a Lake Superior Day 2007 concert in Marquette that raised funds to protect the world's largest body of freshwater.
"We are moving into our fifth year," said Rev. Jon Magnuson, Cedar Tree Institute (CTI) ex. Dir.
Sponsors: CTI, Superior Water Shed Partnership (SWP), Keweenaw Bay Indian Community and 10 faith communities: Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, United Methodist Church, Unitarian Universalist, Bahá'í, Jewish, Quakers & Zen Buddhist.
Partners include the EPA, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans.
Earth Keepers are "trying to honor the creation by preserving it," said Dr. Rodney Clarken, a Bahá'í. "One of the Bahá'í principles is that each human being is entrusted and is in some way the image of God. We can't be pure and holy unless...the environment is pure and holy."
The leader of a Marquette Zen Buddhist temple said "your environment is in trouble right now."
"Zen Buddhists tend to believe in the oneness of all - you are part of your environment - that is absolutely inescapable," said Rev. Tesshin Paul Lehmberg, head priest of Lake Superior Zendo.
Member Nancy Irish said her favorite EKI project is the "Adopt a Watershed" program.
"We've had a number of campouts for kids," said Irish of the Marquette Unitarian Universalist church. "There is nothing more wonderful than facilitating the meeting of the natural world with children .. children protect what they love & they love what they know.""
"One of the Quaker basic testimonies is the simplicity of living and of course this ties well into that (the Earth Keeper Covenant)," said David McCowen of Lake Superior Friends (Quakers).
The SWP and the CTI "facilitate what happens with the Earth Keepers," said watershed partnership representative Natasha Koss.
The Northern Michigan University EarthKeeper Student Team goals include an "Eco-Christmas Initiative," said Sarah Swanson, project director. "We are going to encourage people to be more eco-conscious when they are purchasing gifts for family and friends over the holidays."
Students will recycle televisions in February, now that they are switching to high definition television, she said. And "planting a bunch of trees on Earth Day" plus "organize some community gardens."
People have "an inescapable relationship with their environment," said Ben Scheelk, NMU EK student team project coor. from the Student Leader Fellowship Program.
Rev. Jon Magnuson
firstname.lastname@example.orgMarquette, Michigan - The Upper Peninsula Earth Keepers announced several projects for... more
Several black-colleges in Georgia - including Paine College in Augusta - are partners in a new project to lower violence, reduce the influence of gangs and drugs, increase quality of life, proviide HIV/AIDS information and provide access to healthcare facilities for low-income and underserved residents
The three-year project is funded by a $255,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation,
"We have identified violence as a public health issue," said Rev. Terence A. Dicks, chairman of New Tools New Vision Augusta in an interview with the United Methodist News Service.
New Tools, New Vision is teaming the resources of the Southeast Community Research Center, the Research Center on Health Disparities at Morehouse College in Atlanta and four communities surrounding historically black colleges and universities in Georgia.
In addition to Paine (a United Methodist school), other colleges participating include Morehouse College in Atlanta, Savannah State University, Albany State University and Fort Valley State University.
The Kellogg grant will build problem-solving partnerships in several cities including Augusta where Paine College faculty will work with inner city communities residents are victims of violence, plagued by youth gangs and are witnesses to a dramatic rise in gun crimes (30901, 30906 zip codes).
Augusta is home to the prestigious and exclusive Masters Golf Tournament at the famous Augusta National Golf Club - that's a rich enclave located near some of Augusta's poorest communities.
The excellent story is written by UMNS Reporter Linda Green
Rev. Dicks is well known for his civil rights work in Georgia and recently served as chair of the Augusta Human Relations Commission and is chair of the Georgia Clients Council.
He co-organized the original 1986 James Brown Appreciation day in Augusta, the first time the town had honored the late Godfather of Soul.Several black-colleges in Georgia - including Paine College in Augusta - are partners... more