Category: Sustainability

  • Family Planning Helps the Planet

    by Susan F. Newcomer. Addressing population growth in human terms, not as the bugbear “overpopulation,” necessitates addressing sexuality and childbearing, two particularly sensitive topics. Over the years, Quakers have addressed “episodes of sexual activity” as “sacred, as an expression of a couple’s love for each other” and addressed contraception by…

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  • Photo by Kathy Barnhart. She writes, “Chinese Houses, California Poppies, Lupines, Tidy Tips amidst the oak trees make such a wonderful palette. This area in Shell Ridge Open Space Preserve [CA] is tended by a large group of volunteers, encouraging native flowers and plants and weeding out invasives. What a gift they have given to all!”

    Spring is Here: Time to Plant Native Plants

    By Jim Kessler. Native plants are adapted to the local area and its climate. Unfortunately, many of our beautiful non-native garden flowers provide little or no food for honeybees, native pollinators, songbirds, and other wildlife. Non-native plants have the potential to become invasive species, weeds that spread rapidly…

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  • Kipuka Refuge Photo by Yumi

    Rainforest Restoration in Hawaii

    By Yumi Teresa Radtke Kawano. Editor’s Note: Yumi invited the Quaker Earthcare Witness Steering Committee on a virtual tour of her home in April, and I had the opportunity for a longer tour and conversation a few weeks before. I invite you to imagine you are there with…

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  • Connection With the Living World

    Dear Friends, There is an awakening going on about climate, ecological collapse, and environmental justice both within the Society of Friends and beyond. People are opening up to our message of love and connection with the living world. Our QEW network has expanded over the past…

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  • QEW’s 2021 Annual Report

    A Life Giving Future For All We’d like to share with you Quaker Earthcare Witness’ most recent annual report. We’re pleased to say that we are growing steadily and building momentum. And we couldn’t have done it without you. Thank you for your generous support of Quaker Earthcare Witness.

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  • Green EQAT Logo Earth Quaker Action Team

    Earth Quaker Action Team Takes on Vanguard

    by Jonathan Ogle. The world’s biggest asset managers have a big problem. Companies such as BlackRock, Vanguard, and State Street manage trillions of dollars of investment on behalf of millions of investors. Even while they sign commitments to make their own office operations carbon neutral, they have been investing hundreds…

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  • Kayakers at sunset, Albany Bulb, California

    Young Adults’ Workshop: Exploring Ecospirituality

    Join Hayley Hathaway, of Quaker Earthcare Witness, for Exploring Ecospirituality: Old & New Ways to Imagine & Transform, a workshop for young adults (ages 18-40). The workshop will be held online, Thursday, February 17, 7:30 – 9 pm Eastern Time. “The world is not a problem to be solved; it…

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  • Spiderweb with black background

    Web of Care for the Earth

    Dear Friends, As our beloved outgoing clerk, Mary Jo Klingel, writes: “If the past two years of virtual meetings, workshops, and worship sharings have taught QEW Friends anything, it is how very precious our Earthcare community is.” She continues: Those who work every day for QEW, those who…

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  • Blue book cover with pink and green wheel

    Q&A with Douglas Gwyn

    Doug Gwyn, the author of A Sustainable Life: Quaker Faith and Practice in the Renewal of Creation, generously agreed to be interviewed for this issue of BeFriending Creation. Thanks, Doug! 1. You explain how your thought and interests developed through several books, always including the thread of your concern for the Earth. Was…

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  • Durham Friends Meeting Install Solar Panel

    Durham Friends Install Solar Panels

    By Dale Evarts. IN AUGUST 2019, following a spiritual leading to live in harmony with Creation by harnessing the energy of the sun to power our meetinghouse, Durham Friends Meeting (DFM), a member of the North Carolina Yearly Meeting Conservative, began generating electricity from solar panels installed that summer. After…

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  • Sunset over lake

    Practicing Earth Activism

    By Ruah Swennerfelt (Updated 2021 by Hayley Hathaway). To become more active on behalf of Earth, start by making yourself aware of the issues. Learn from sources in addition to the conventional news reports. Begin examining ways you can reduce your purchases, buy local, rather than transported, goods, walk or…

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  • Earthcare, Energy, and the Right Use of Things

    Visualizing the Better World That Is Possible by Louis Cox TURNING OVER A NEW LEAF. While casting about for ways to introduce this article about changing wasteful lifestyles, one of my favorite movies broke to the surface: A New Leaf (1971, **½) is about a middle-aged playboy…

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  • Master Chinese herbalist Joe Hollis with young apprentice in his apothecary at Mountain Gardens, Celo, North Carolina.

    Mutual Aid & Local Food Sufficiency in the Era of COVID-19

    By Bob McGahey. South Toe Mutual Aid is an organization of people in the South Toe/Celo, North Carolina area who are collaborating in a variety of activities with intent to strengthen our community’s capacity to meet our resource needs for overall well-being. As a hub of Co-operate WNC, a regional…

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  • Yellow Prairie Flower in field

    Quakers Caring for God’s Creation: A Kessler Family Journey

    By Jim Kessler. SERENDIPITOUS moments are transformative intellectually and spiritually. In 1970, close to the first Earth Day, I was finishing a Masters in Biology at the University of Northern Iowa. I bought a Sierra Club book entitled A Moment in the Sun. Its clear description of the environmental crisis…

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  • Photo of Electrical Pilon

    Roadmaps to a Better Future: Analyzing Climate Change Solutions Without Geoengineering

    By Judy Lumb. HOW DO WE ensure a future on Earth for humans and other creatures? Three recent reports analyze solutions to climate change that meet the ambition of the Paris Agreement. The Climate Urgency: Setting Sail for a New Paradigm  Coopération Internationale pour le Développement et la Solidarité (CIDSE)…

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  • Photo of root with hand

    Listening to Roots, Walking in Beauty

    By Mey Hasbrook. IN THE MEADOW, I gave thanks beside a beech tree. Sunset neared after a beautiful day with Swarthmoor Area Meeting of Southwest Cumbria, England. This area is called “the cradle of Quakerism” and brings to mind The Valiant 60, the 17th-century law-breaking mystics and traveling ministers from…

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  • Group Shot at Inauguration

    Quaker Teachers Take on Climate Change and Restore Mexican Cloud Forest

    By Paula Kline. Alan Wright and Paula Kline first took students to the Mexican Cloud Forest in 2003. Teachers at Westtown School in southeastern Pennsylvania, the couple had initiated the Quaker school’s agriculture program for its bi-centennial in 1999. Inspired by the ground breaking work of John Jeavons’ approach to…

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  • A NSNP Youth Saves Seed from Cilantro Plants

    Praying on Seeds: Solidarity for Puerto Rican Sovereignty

    By Marian Dalke. SUNDAY MORNING’s soft light casts through deep wooden windows. The light shifts and picks up the soft cotton of milkweed seeds, sailing over the heads of those gathered for Quaker Meeting for Worship at Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting. Grace Gonglewski shares a message about “praying on seeds,”…

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  • The Gift That Keeps on Giving: Updates at Catoctin Quaker Camp

    By Liz Hofmeister. ON SEPTEMBER 30TH, former campers, counselors, and others long associated with Baltimore Yearly Meeting’s Catoctin Quaker Camp marked the 60th anniversary of the residential summer camp located some 50 miles west of Baltimore, MD. A highlight of the weekend celebration was the dedication of the camp’s new…

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  • Clean Jobs Act Protest

    Organizing for Community and Climate

    By Jaime DeMarco. I RECENTLY HELPED CO-FOUND the Maryland Clean Energy Jobs Initiative, a new non-profit working to pass legislation in Maryland that will do three things. It will expand renewable electricity in Maryland to 50% by 2030, invest in renewable energy companies owned by women and people…

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  • Quaker House

    Ecological Living at Quaker Retirement Community

    By Elizabeth Boardman. PERHAPS, IF WE HAD ASKED THEM, our grandchildren could have told us before we came here to Friends House what benefits we would accrue by moving out of the big family home to a small apartment.  And now we could tell them the advantages of a communal…

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  • Yellow fruit in mesh bag

    Walking Cheerfully Over the Earth: Step by Step to a Greener Lifestyle

    By Marjorie McKelvey Isaacs, Psy.D. FWCC has approved a minute asking everyone to personally make green lifestyle changes. All change, even desired improvements, creates some stress. My psychology clients and I, working together for more healthy lifestyles, discovered research, strategies, and viewpoints that can make change easier. Thanks also to…

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  • Sustainability and Truth

    By Louis Cox. THE TERM “SUSTAINABILITY” came into fashion with the modern environmental movement, particularly after the 1992 UN Earth Summit. The concept has offered hope in the face of relentless bad news by highlighting things that ordinary people can do that would make a big difference if enough…

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  • Peace on Earth, Peace with Earth: Living in a Radically New Way

    By Kim Carlyle. Living in a Radically New Way SINCE 1955 when he registered as a conscientious objector, Karl Meyer has been an activist for peace, advocating nonviolence, organizing demonstrations, and refusing to pay taxes to finance war. Over the years, he has come to realize that an…

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  • Drawing of John Woolman

    Living in Right Relationship

    EIGHTEENTH CENTURY QUAKER John Woolman called for living in the “right relationship” as he witnessed to his generation against the evils of slavery, oppression, and materialism- which he warned were causing injury to future generations. We discern a similar dynamic of greed and thoughtlessness in today’s global environmental crisis.

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  • Glass filled with pennies and nickels with small plant growing out of it

    Friends, Money, and the Earth

    This article is part of our Pamphlets for Sharing series produced by QEW’s Publications Committee. Download the PDF here or order print copies by emailing info@quakerearthcare.org. Mindful earning, spending, giving, and investing can lower our ecological foot- prints and promote peace and social justice. But going beyond our…

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  • Woman counts US dollar bills

    Mindful Living, Mindful Giving

    This article is part of our Pamphlets for Sharing series produced by QEW’s Publications Committee. Download the PDF here or order print copies by emailing info@quakerearthcare.org. “COMPASSIONATE CONSUMPTION is not about sacrificing or giving up what we need. It is about reawakening to the sacred within and around…

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  • Quakers Practicing Sustainability

    This article is part of QEW’s Pamphlets for Sharing Series. Download it here or email info@quakerearthcare.org Practicing Sustainability—What Does It Mean for Friends? Caterpillars undergo transformation into butterflies; tadpoles into frogs. This is metamorphosis. Can we transform our culture and our individual lives to…

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  • Birds flock at dusk

    Freeing Ourselves from Possessions

    This article is part of our Pamphlets for Sharing series produced by QEW’s Publications Committee. Download the PDF here or order print copies by emailing info@quakerearthcare.org. By Tom Small FOR SOME TIME NOW, my house has been becoming more transparent. I can see across it,…

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