Earth Spirit Action Team’s “Good Tidings”

Welcome to our bi-weekly bulletin “Good Tidings”, or good news. This bi-weekly bulletin is for all whom in gratitude care about God’s creation and want to do what we can to keep it healthy. Our bulletin is meant to be “good news” because it will help you to keep informed about global and local environmental and climate change issues and provide options for personal and political actions you can take to preserve and build a healthy planet.

In Earth-Spirit-Action’s recent congregational survey, respondents ranked these initiatives to preserve and build a healthy creation as their top five:

  • focusing on local environmental issues,          
  • focusing on eco-projects related to our church buildings and grounds,
  • learning more about environmental/climate change issues in general,
  • learning new ideas for personal lifestyle earth friendly practices,
  • opportunities for environmentally themed worship and prayer.


“Good Tidings” will provide resources (online programs, books and articles, and opportunities for personal and political actions which you may choose to participate in) for each of these five categories. We will highlight one or two gems for each category in each bulletin and welcome feedback from readers who would like to share their insights on these five initiatives. Our email is: .  Here is our first effort…

Local Environmental Issues:

From the Ecology Action Center:  Canada has increased its federal commitments on land protection, and it’s time for Nova Scotia to do its part! It has taken over two decades for Nova Scotia to try and meet its 13% land protection commitment. The province’s Sustainable Development Goals Act (SDGA) is our best opportunity to secure a land protection target that will effectively preserve Nova Scotia’s unique and critical ecosystems. Send a message to your MLA calling for a 17% land protection commitment and a deadline for implementation. It's time for Nova Scotia to make room for nature!

Environmental Racism with Dr. Ingrid Waldron. Dr. Waldron is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Health at Dalhousie, and Director of the NGO Environmental Noxiousness, Racial Inequities & Community Health Project (ENRICH). Her research shows how threats to land and water, climate change, and the pandemic negatively impact Black and Indigenous communities.  Laura Hunter, UCC Regional Minister for Justice and Mission interviews Dr Waldon in the series Making Hope Visible. (Google this)


Eco-Projects Related to Our Church Building and Grounds:                                                                                          GOOD ENERGY by Anne Marie Dalton

Recently some members of St. Matthew’s attended a Zoom webinar on Greening Church Buildings. The webinar was sponsored by the Anglican Diocesan Environmental Network (DEN) and given by Ben Grieder from the Ecology Action Centre. Ben is employed by the United Church of Canada as the Eastern Canada sponsor of the UCC Faithful Footprints program. (see website

Ben gave a comprehensive overview of how churches can be made more energy efficient, starting with changes that cost less than $10 and going all the way to Solar and Wind energy installations. He also included good information regarding rebate programs and resources. His full presentation is still available at However, here are some of the facts and/or suggestions I found fascinating!

Did you know that air sealing the cracks that allow air through the doors and windows (or elsewhere) often makes the biggest contribution to energy efficiency? Caulking-gun party anyone? An air-tight building requires much less heat source.

In churches what do you think comes next in terms of efficiency? APPLIANCES! Oops, big almost empty old freezers and refrigerators that are running constantly are a huge drain in churches. Think twice about taking those generous donations of hand-me-downs.

I had never considered the importance of more occupancy for church buildings apart from generating income or providing charitable service. Apparently, many rebates depend on how often and to what extent all parts of the building are used.

What about those less than 10 dollar- efforts? Yes, you may have guessed – the same things that work in our homes. Turn off those lights when not in use—a pretty sign reminder helps; unplug those appliances and power bars when not in use; work with less lighting when possible; replace lighting with LED including EXIT signs (repays cost in about 6 months) and so on.

O our lovely stained-glass windows … so inefficient. There are actually folks who can preserve the beauty and the energy. Nice to know.

Then there are the more dramatic and exciting ones – solar panels (many choices), wind turbines, or a combination. But do your homework – learn about inverters and don’t get taken in by the latest version especially on a sunny roof like St. Matt’s. AND remember… get as close to a passive-energy building as possible before deciding on the big stuff.

Finally check out Woodlawn United Church website for a great story. In the meantime, let’s get Nova Scotia Power divorced from coal. Stay well, warm and safe everyone.

Learning about Environmental/Climate Change Issues in General:

Lectures by Mark Carney on the Climate Crisis and its impact on financial markets.

Mark Carney, former Governor of the Banks of Canada and England, has been  aware of the economic and social impacts of the climate crisis for over a decade and has cautioned how this s phenomenon is and will increasingly impact financial markets.  He describes how financial markets themselves, having now begun rediscovering social purpose through shifting public sentiment, may help see us through to the other side.


Learning new Ideas for Personal Lifestyle / Earth Friendly Practices:

From Laura Hunter, Minister for Justice and Mission, Atlantic Regions, UCofC,                and the Ecological Justice Working Group of the Atlantic Regions of the UCofC     

For the Love of Creation. The United Church of Canada is participating in For the Love of Creation, a program created by a national coalition of faith-based groups to mobilize Canadians to engage, educate, and take action, including calling for increased federal climate action, from Ash Wednesday (February 17) to the End of the Season of Creation (Oct. 4th). Facilitation guides are available for hosting small group discussions on the website under resources.   

 Imagine and Act 

 Before Green Faith Day of Action March 11th,  make a plan with others – from your congregation, family, or friends to listen to *Rob Hopkins’ Ted Talk (approx. 14.5 minutes) on awakening our imagination and power to think and to work together towards the future we want. You could also view “A Message from the Future” or a “Message from the Future II”). Our greatest goal and imagining is that we all can live and worship in safe, sustainable, just communities that meet the challenges of the climate crisis. Join us on March 21 at 7PM Atlantic over Zoom to share and celebrate our dreams and commit to actions across our regions. Register here.

Change your Corner of the World  Carl Duivenvoorden,  a Climate Reality Leader from NB presents a video power point presentation outlining the science behind the climate crisis, and specific impacts of the climate crisis worldwide and on Eastern Canada. He shares local stories and inspiring solutions and the video includes a Q&A. Advance to 7.00 min. as the first mins are blank.

 Opportunities for Environmentally Themed Worship and Prayer:                Praying with the Diocesan Environmental Network Community. Morning Prayer is live streamed on Zoom on Fridays at 9:30am. Prayers take shape from different traditions and focus on various aspects of our relationship with Creation. To obtain the link please email: