Green The Church

Getting the Black Church involved in Environmental Justice and Climate Change

Green the Church, (GTC), is an initiative designed to tap into the power and purpose of the African American church community, and to explore and expand the role of churches as centers for environmental and economic resilience”

GTC hosted its annual summit in St. Louis, MO this October. This initiative that Green the Church is leading is so important for the African American community both Christian and non-Christian. GTC is rebuilding a lost connection of not just the black church but all religious institutions and the people that they serve. Their timing to do the summit in St. Louis was at such a critical and important time. The summit comes on the heels of the release of the environmental racism report from a collaboration with Wash U, Sierra Club and Dutch Town.

Also we are in the fifth anniversary year of the murder of Micheal Brown and the 400th year since the beginning of the enslavement of black people in America. Throughout our time here we have had our religious institutions on the front lines fighting against injustices and serving as a healing place for our communities. But it seems in this last decade when we talk about the injustice of environmental racism and its effects on African Americans that a silent pause arises and the most evident is that of the black church.

GTC has come at a time when it is necessary that our religious institutions reconnect with communities and their needs. Not just reconnect, but become the foundation for the community that has not been protected from environmental racism and become the key to solving the environmental crisis.

GTC was a two day summit hosted by Rev. Roderick Burton and New Northside
Missionary Baptist church. Keynote speaker was Mustafa Santigo Ali who touched on a myriad of issues, such as climate change, food sovereignty, environmental racism and solutions such as community ownership, advocacy, and the black church’s participation. GTC partnered with The Nature Conservancy to present a $5,000 grant for projects done in partnership with a religious institution.

GTC has become successful where others haven’t; reconnecting the black church with the fight for injustice.

You can get updates from Green the Church at greenthechurch.org and learn more about opportunities with The Nature Conservancy at missouri@tnc.org. MCE’s website is www.moenvironment.org.