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Volume 2 , Issue 1
February 2021
The Time is Now: Join the Kairos Call to Action!
The Wisconsin Conference adopted the United Church of Christ’s Kairos Call to Action at the 2020 annual meeting. The Kairos Call to Action is a ten-year action plan to inspire and guide faithful action in response to global climate change. In his recent video, Franz Rigert, Conference Minister, invites all congregations and their members to join in the Wisconsin Conference’s Kairos Call to Action. 
Whether you have already begun a creation care journey or are just contemplating action, we encourage congregations to take the next step and share their commitment to the Kairos Call to Action by creating a Covenant of Creation Care (see example below) and sharing it with the Conference. We will record and lift up the names of covenanted congregations. By doing so, we can form a community to share knowledge and resources, and celebrate and strengthen our collective work for climate justice.
The Wisconsin Conference Board of Directors, along with the Creation Care Team, hopes to have at least 100 congregations joining in this call by the end of 2021! To assist in these efforts, the Conference Creation Care Team is working to support congregations and their members through resourcing, advocacy, and connections. 
The name “kairos” comes from the New Testament Greek word for “the right time,” as in Jesus’ announcement of the Good News at the beginning of his ministry (Mark 1:15a): “The time has come…” (NEB) or “Time’s up” (The Message). Kairos Call to Action also references the prophetic words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., that “the fierce urgency of now” compels us to take action.
Kairos Call to Action was written and released by the national United Church of Christ’s Council for Climate Justice in 2019. Wisconsin is the first conference to formally adopt the Kairos Call by resolution. Our Creation Care Team and the Conference Board of Directors intends for this “Call to Action” to inspire and guide our work for the next decade, a crucial one for the health of the planet. We must not allow Kairos to gather dust or disappear!
Please consider taking action on the Kairos Call in your congregation in time for Earth Day in April. If your congregation already has a functioning green team, this action could begin there. If not, it may take only one faith-driven creation caregiver to present Kairos to your administrative board or congregation.
Yes, we all have plenty on our plate, with the ongoing crises of the COVID pandemic and social polarization, but we nonetheless urge you to consider becoming a Kairos Call to Action church in 2021. Whether our world is paying attention or not, climate change is warming our oceans, melting our polar ice, raising sea levels and threatening the extinction of species. As Jesus says, “The [right] time has come.”
We are on this journey together; please share your covenant and your progress. 
If you need guidance on how to get underway, please contact Lisa Hart. Also, check out these resources:
Here is an example of a Kairos Call to Action Covenant for churches to use or modify as needed.

We, the members of ______________ pledge to be devoted stewards of Creation. 
We are called by God our Creator to take action personally and in community to help sustain our earth. Recognizing the many threats to pure air, clean water, productive land, and the health of all living beings, we covenant with each other and the greater church.
We will join in the United Church of Christ Kairos Call to Action and assess every possible way we can work toward climate recovery within our church and community. 
We will strive to understand the causes and issues threatening the earth and take responsible action personally and as a church to work toward recovery and sustainability. 
We will ensure appreciation and care for creation is part of all of the work of the church: in worship, church activities, community outreach, and upkeep of our buildings.
We make this covenant together because we believe that peace and justice are God’s plan for all creation. The earth and all creation are God’s. God calls us to be careful, humble stewards of this earth, and to protect and restore it for its own sake, and for a safe, healthy, and peaceful future home for all. As God offers all people the special gift of peace through Jesus Christ, and through Christ reconciles all to God, we are called to deal justly with one another and the earth.
Adopted by the Members of ________________

Date: _____________________
[Add signatures of all members]

Completed Covenants can be mailed to the Wisconsin Conference United Church of Christ office attention Lisa Hart, or emailed to Lisa at [email protected].
Climate Good News!
Moment of Awe
In this video, Amanda Gorman reads "Earthrise," her inspiring poem about climate change. You'll want to listen, and listen again. And share. And marvel.

Want to share your own "Moment of Awe?" Send a photo or video to [email protected] and we'll include it in a future newsletter.
Sustainability Tips
Following are some individual actions we can take to reduce our carbon footprint through our practices around food. Thanks to Curt Anderson, Plymouth Church UCC, Milwaukee, for these tips.
Eat Less Meat and/or No Red Meat
Meat causes more global warming emissions that almost any other kind of food. According to a recent study, beef production accounts for more than one-third of all heat-trapping emissions from our agricultural sector. (Union of Concerned Scientists). Each hamburger that comes from cattle on deforested land (e.g., the Amazon Rain Forest) is responsible for the destruction of 55 square feet of forest.  The average American eats 270 lbs. of meat per year, nearly 4 times the global average. By replacing meat with grains, vegetables, fruits & nuts, you can have a lower carbon footprint and a healthier lifestyle. Is this an action you could take?
Don’t Waste Food. Buy Only What You Need
Wasted food accounts for a surprising amount of emissions because there is so much of it. In 2009, the USA wasted more than one quarter of the food available for consumption, most of which generates methane gas in municipal landfills instead of being used to create compost, a natural fertilizer. One study found that 60% of food waste occurred at the consumer level (Union of Concerned Scientists). Could you do something about this in your house?

Send your sustainability tips to [email protected] and we'll share them in future Kairos newsletters!
Recommended Resources
  • Forming a Green Team - This recorded webinar sponsored by the Wisconsin Conference Creation Care Team features members of St. Stephens UCC, Merrill, and First Congregational UCC, River Falls, who are at different stages of forming Green or Kairos Action Teams in their communities. View this webinar and share with others in your congregation who are passionate about caring for God's good creation. We hope this webinar will provide inspiration for your congregation and help you connect with others to begin a conversation if you haven’t already done so.

  • Several other on-demand Creation Care Team webinars would make great conversation starters as you call together a Green Team for your congregation. Check them out here.

  • Evangelical Christianity and the Climate Crisis, a UCC Webinar, Feb 10th at Noon CT. With its size and its collective power, evangelical Christianity has had a significant presence in the political, cultural, and religious landscape of the United States. As such, it becomes critically important to understand evangelical Christianity today in relationship to the climate crisis. February’s Creation Justice Webinar will feature a panel of speakers who will help us develop this understanding. Two evangelical climate leaders will be joined on a panel by Dr. Robin Veldman who has authored "The Gospel of Climate Skepticism: Why Evangelical Christians Oppose Action on Climate Change." Even if you can't make the webinar’s scheduled time, still sign-up, and we’ll send you a recording of it. Sign-up now for the webinar!
HOPE FOR CREATION'S CLIMATE CHANGE SPEAKER SERIES - Find complete information on Hope for Creation's Facebook Events page. You can access all events via the River Falls Public Library’s Facebook or Youtube pages.
  • Thursday, Feb 4, Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes will help us chart a course for Wisconsin’s carbon-free future. Lt. Governor Barnes serves as the Chair of the Wisconsin Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change. The bi-partisan task force is charting a path toward 100% carbon free by 2050, while improving the state’s economy, and ensuring all communities are a part of the conversation and solution.You may wish to read the report that the Governor’s Task Force on Climate Change produced.
  • March 25, 6-7 pm, United We Can Solve This, with Tia Nelson, conservationist and climate change advocate. Nelson is the former managing director of the climate program at the Outrider Foundation in Madison, WI. She will discuss the film created to inspire the continued legacy of her father, former Governor of Wisconsin Gaylord Nelson, founder of Earth Day.
  • April 21, Wildlife and Plastics: The Innocent Victims, with Terry L. Root, Nobel Peach Price Recipient (IPCC Member) and Professor Emerita at Stanford University.


  • Daily Devotional Guide for Lent - Let lent ground you in caring for creation. A few years ago, First Congregational UCC, River Falls, developed a daily devotional guide for Lent focused on creation care and environmental justice. 

  • Kairos Call to Action: 10 Years of Church Mobilization on Climate and Inequality - This resource created by the UCC Council for Climate Justice provides scientific, theological, and practical resources for churches seeking to develop 10-year mobilization plans to address the twin, intertwined crises of climate and inequality. You'll also find "10 Ways Churches Can Mobilize," a focused framework for discernment and the setting of goals so each church can discern how it can best address climate and inequality with the means and opportunities before them.

Solar Powered!
New Solar Installation at Grace Congregational UCC, Two Rivers
Grace Congregational UCC, Two Rivers, celebrated their new solar installation with a brief dedication service of thanks at sunrise on Thanksgiving morning (held outdoors with social distancing and masks). The Grace solar array includes 67 panels and was installed by Arch Electric. The congregation received a Solar for Good grant, with additional grants from Focus on Energy and WPPI through their local utility. The remainder of the cost has been underwritten by generous donations from members of the congregation. Grace expects their solar installation to offset about 35% of their electrical usage (pre-pandemic). 
Thanks to Don DeBruyn, member of Grace's Earth Care Ministry, for sharing this exciting news.

If your church has a solar installation, please send us a photo so that we can feature it in a future Kairos Newsletter!

View Franz Rigert's video Announcing the Wisconsin Conference UCC Kairos Call To Action and share with your congregation!

Sign up for the Kairos Call to Action Newsletter to ensure you don't miss future issues!
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Wisconsin Conference UCC | wcucc.org