When it comes to the future of the planet and the welfare of communities in the face of environmental destruction and the climate crisis, the importance of the November election cannot be underestimated. As much as ever, it is important that people of faith vote and vote their values. Now is the time to vote for justice. Here are three resources to help guide your congregation when it comes to caring for creation and voting one’s values:
#1 Invite members to take the Creation Care Voter Pledge which is a non-partisan program to support people of faith in consistently voting their values as they put “love into action for every living creature and for every economically or racially marginalized community that suffers from environmental harm.” One can collect and dedicate the pledges of members in worship as Church of the Covenant did in Boston. The Environmental Ministries Team for the Southern New England Conference is also launching a “Congregation Climate Voter Challenge” to encourage congregations to have 75% or more of their members take the Creation Care Voter Pledge.
#2 Make use of the creation care voting resources produced by the UCC’s Our Faith Our Vote program. Our Faith Our Vote guides congregations in how to participate in the electoral process through faithful, nonpartisan engagement. Resources include a webinar on environmental justice and voting along with a one-page background document on UCC commitments. Our Faith Our Vote additionally offers practical resources to learn how to vote early and to check on whether your voter registration information is up-to-date.
#3 Faith in Public Life and Interfaith Power & Light have released a voter reflection guide entitled Democracy, Values & the 2020 Election. This nonpartisan guide offers timely sections that address urgent moral issues at stake in this election. In addition to the climate crisis and creation care, the guide addresses topics such as justice for immigrants, economic dignity, racism and criminal justice reform, democracy and voting rights, health care and the coronavirus pandemic, and global peacebuilding.
There are countless ways to build upon these resources. Form a task force to develop and execute a plan for bringing “souls to the polls” in your community. Conduct a phone tree within your congregation to not only encourage voting but to help people figure out how to vote during a pandemic election season that could potentially lead to confusion over when and how to vote. Use your imagination and creativity to find ways to take action as a congregation.
This resource was created by the UCC Council for Climate Justice.