Climate Change | The United Church of Canada
The Earth is a sacred trust. We recognize God’s call…to draw on the Earth’s sustenance responsibly, and to care for it that all may benefit equitably now and in the future.
—from One Earth Community (1992)
What We Believe
A New Creed calls us “to live with respect in Creation.” Creation is a gift of God, and caring for Creation is a spiritual commitment. We cherish Creation’s rich diversity and respect its inherent value and right to protection.
Climate change impacts us, the local eco-systems of which we are part, and partners the United Church is connected with around the globe. The greatest burden of climate change is falling on people in the Far North and global South—those who have contributed least to the problem.
Indigenous voices in the church remind us that we are called upon to look after Creator’s gifts and to pass along these gifts to our children. We can be part of a just transition to a renewable energy economy by pressuring governments and industries, ending unsustainable overconsumption through lifestyle choices, and working with United Church ministries and partners engaged in climate justice.
What You Can Do
- Celebrate Creation in worship, while committing to action for its well-being, with the use of these resources:
- Earth Hour (the fourth or fifth Saturday of March)
- Earth Sunday (the Sunday closest to April 22)
- Environment Sunday (the Sunday closest to June 5)
- Aboriginal Sunday (the Sunday closest to June 21)
- Creation Time in the Season of Pentecost (five Sundays in September and early October)
- Thanksgiving Sunday (the second Sunday in October)
- World Food Sunday (the third Sunday in October)
- Advocate for change to climate change policy with the Canadian government and other decision-makers. Visit Act Now for timely opportunities to take action.
- Fast for the Climate. By choosing not to eat on the first day of every month, a growing movement of youth, environmentalists, and people of faith is standing in solidarity with those who are most affected climate change and calling for world leaders to act to stop global warming.
- Reduce the environmental impact of your faith community. Faith and the Common Good’s Greening Sacred Spaces initiative offers excellent resources for building sustainable communities.
- Learn more about the role people of faith play in climate justice:
- Explore resources such as the video above, the Downloads, and these infographics from Citizens for Public Justice
- Joining the United Church e-mail network Concerned for Climate Justice
- Engaging in watershed discipleship—a process of learning more about our place (our watershed) and the injustices that affect it
- Learning more about Mining and Resource Extraction and Fracking
- Attending a United Church Camp that offers programming and initiatives related to the environment and climate change (more information available under Downloads)
- Researching policy decisions related to the environment and ecology on United Church Commons
- Reading On Promoting Climate Justice and Ending Poverty in Canada, an interfaith statement in which Canadian faith leaders directly connect global climate change to poverty
- Viewing Pope Francis’ landmark encyclical Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home (2015)
- Reading KAIROS Canada’s backgrounders on key climate justice issues
Religious leaders in ecumenical celebration for Creation at Notre-Dame Cathedral, Paris, during COP21 climate talks, 2015.
Credit: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/LWF
The Work of Our Networks and Partners
- Climate Action Network
- Citizens for Public Justice
- KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives
- Greening Sacred Spaces (Faith and the Common Good)
- Fossil-free Faith
- United Church Camps
For more information, contact:
Program Coordinator, Public Witness
416-231-7680 ext. 4078
1-800-268-3781 ext. 4078
Program Coordinator, Social Analysis & Congregational Engagement
416-231-7680 ext. 4196
1-800-268-3781 ext. 4196