Commit2Respond is Turning One! What Will We Do Next?
When we join our efforts together in new ways, incredible things happen!
Commit2Respond was formed a year ago in recognition of the fact that Unitarian Universalists and like-hearted people of faith and conscience care deeply about our world and are putting faith into action wherever we are—and if we join together in new ways, we can amplify our efforts and our impact.
Resist 450: UU Young Adults Join Resistance against Colonization
By Aly Tharp, Benjamin Franklin Craft-Rendon, Elizabeth Mount, and Jason Faulk
Today, we four Unitarian Universalist Young Adults for Climate Justice (UUYACJ) members will begin making our way across the Gulf Coast to St. Augustine, Florida, to stand in solidarity with the Council of the Original Miccosukee Simanolee Nation Aboriginal Peoples and other allies in the Resist 450 Coalition.
From September 5-9 we will join other activists in peacefully demonstrating against St. Augustine's 450th Anniversary Celebration of the arrival of Spanish colonizers, including a historical reenactment of the landing of Spanish colonizer Pedro Menéndez de Aviles.
Unitarian Universalists Gear Up for Week of Moral Action for Climate Justice
People of faith and conscience are gearing up for a Week of Moral Action for Climate Justice during Pope Francis’s visit to Washington, DC, September 22-24, and Unitarian Universalists are right in the thick of it, organized by Unitarian Universalists for Social Justice in the National Capital Region!
Announcing New Steering Committee Members
Commit2Respond's Steering Committee welcomes five new members this summer!
The Steering Committee is made up of representatives of the nine organizations leading Commit2Respond (find out more about the leadership of Commit2Respond, including returning Steering Committee members).
We are excited to welcome the following newest members:
Ten Years after Katrina: Intersections and Action
What do #BlackLivesMatter and environmental justice have to do with each other? Everything.
When Katrina—a Category 5 hurricane that's part of the pattern of more frequent and severe weather events predicted by leading climatologists due to global warming—made landfall on August 29, 2005, the impact was beyond devastating. But it was not felt equally by everyone in the storm’s path.
The neighborhoods hit hardest, the people who were unable to evacuate, the horrifyingly inadequate federal response, the media coverage of the survivors, and the rebuilding efforts all point to the fact that all lives did not and do not matter to our government or to the media. Poor people, disproportionately African American people, bore the greatest impacts of the storm.
UUA President Calls for Strong, International Climate Agreement in Paris
Today Unitarian Universalists for Social Justice in the National Capital Region (UUSJ) delivered a letter signed by Unitarian Universalist Association President Rev. Peter Morales to Todd Stern, U.S. Special Envoy for Climate Change, urging the U.S. Department of State to speak out in support of a strong, compassionate, and binding international climate agreement at the COP21 Paris Climate Conference.
Six leaders from UUSJ traveled to the U.S. Department of State and met with Special Representative Shaun A. Casey of the Office of Religion and Global Affairs, his staff Liora Dana and Christine Li, and Jesse Young, Senior Advisor to Todd Stern, and discussed the letter (below), the Action of Immediate Witness on climate change passed at the UUA General Assembly in June, and the fact that a strong, international climate agreement is a moral imperative.
Building Partnerships for Justice with Indigenous Communities: One Congregation's Story
by Beth Brownfield and Deborah Cruz
The Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (BUF) of Bellingham, WA, is a relatively small congregation with just over 250 members. Yet we have made a large impact in our local community and our larger denomination with our social justice initiatives, one of which is our Native Americans Connections Committee.
Little did we realize when we started out that the impacts of our work would be felt so far, so wide, or so deeply. We are in awe of what we’ve been privileged to be a significant part of.
Young Adults for Climate Justice at UUA General Assembly
The UU Young Adults for Climate Justice (UUYACJ) had something of a home run last month, in delivering three very successful workshops at the UUA General Assembly in Portland.
We are thankful to all the participants and fellow-organizers who made General Assembly such a show of force for climate justice organizing within our faith community and the world at large. In total, there were more than twenty workshops about climate justice! We also had a very meaningful Public Witness event with the Lummi Nation, learning about their struggles for climate justice in their traditional territories.
Six Ways to Take Action
Thank you for your witness!
2,500 people showed up for climate justice and Indigenous rights on June 27 in Portland, Oregon, in person or via live stream.
Together we listened to the story, struggle, and wisdom of leaders from Lummi Nation at the front lines of the environmental crisis, then we co-created a powerful ritual of sending blessings to the four directions and making spiritual commitments to climate justice.
UUA General Assembly Passes Resolution on Climate Change
On June 28, 2015, the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association passed a resolution calling on Unitarian Universalists to take action for a livable climate. This "Action of Immediate Witness" was one of four social justice statements passed by the General Assembly this June.