This is part of a SynchroBlog which has been created for the purpose allowing blog friends to speak on one subject together, and this month we are joining the much larger Blog Action Day.
As a pastor of an evangelical congregation in Salem, MA, and one particularly noted for its rather creative and quirky outreach practices, it would not seem that our little congregation would take a center stage in the climate change discussion, but like Salem bends - things are not as it seems.
I am not particularly passionate about carbon footprint numbers. I am passionate about sustainable energy, and especially when it can be done cheaply for the Average Joe. I like people who build their own wind turbines from Home Depot parts, and those who make bio-diesel.
Yet for all this, our little church has become a periodic gathering point for the sustainable energy discussions, and workshops, and I have become a gatherer of low carbon footprint interests.
It started a year and half ago.
The Chamber of Commerce runs an event called The Salem Living Green Fair. We were asked to host the speaker series. After two years of events, our church is the place to go to hear the green people talk.
Next, I started a company called CeltiConnect. Somehow, I, a veteran pastor of small churches became involved in business and trade development with Welsh interests. My partner has a background in renewable energy, and this led to a whole new circle of friends. As a result we sponsored Paul Allen from The Centre for Alternative Technology in Machynlleth, Wales to speak to the renewable energy interests in our area.
Now we are hosting a 350.org event on October 24th at 2pm on a stage, which we build and host every Halloween season in Salem, MA.
Jeff Barz-Snell from First Church Salem is really the brainy pastor in town when it comes to carbon footprints,and renewable energy. He was trained under Al Gore. He is doing most of the organizing of the event on the 24th, but once again The Gathering takes a central role ion the development of the day.
How we got here I am not totally sure. The fact that we are here is good. The Church (notice I capitalized the word here) needs to be in on one of the biggest discussions of this decade - if not beyond.