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February Newsletter

Each day, we get to choose how we’ll show up. How much love we’ll bring with us as we head out the door; how much kindness, empathy, and commitment. Some days, that’s much harder as we face this new political climate.

At MNIPL, we’re building capacity to respond fiercely, through our rapid response network, to protect all that we love, to bring the richness of our values and traditions to the uncertainty of this moment.

We know that attempts to divide us will not succeed because we have a tremendous capacity to hold complexity. We will work at the intersections, building racial, economic, and climate justice, as we cultivate a culture of resistance and resilience. We’ll continue to stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters, and all those who endangered by the Trump administration.

This newsletter includes concrete, actionable ways for you to respond to this moment with faith and courage. Onward!

Urgent Action Opportunities

Defend Clean Energy Progress Three bills are quickly moving through the Minnesota legislature that threatens to roll back our hard-won energy progress and increase rates which will disproportionately hurt low-income communities and communities of color. As people of faith, we know another energy future is possible, one that works for our communities AND our climate. This is not the energy future we want for our state. Sign on to our letter to Governor Dayton to veto these bills.

Join our Rapid Response Team This moment calls for us to strengthen our ability to rapidly respond. Are you willing to jump in when you are most needed? Click here to join our rapid response team.

Support Inclusive Financing. We are working to build an energy system that works for everyone and builds equity at the intersections of racial, economic, and climate justice. We are calling on Xcel to remove the barriers that keep low-income families and families with less than perfect credit from investing in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and weatherization improvements. Sign our petition to Xcel Energy.

Events

Honor Our Life Givers- Youth & Family Art Night Feb 13th, 5pm, MNIPL Office, 2104 Stevens Ave S, Minneapolis. Please join us for a night of art making, delicious food, and relationship building with our partners at Native Lives Matter.  The art we create will be used at 3rd Annual Women’s Memorial March-#NiBiWalk-Honor Women & Water on Feb 14th at 2327 E Franklin Ave, as we march to protect women and our water.

DULUTH:

Public Planning Input Session - Sustainability and Energy, Feb. 9, City Hall (303), 5-8pm. Join us for a City of Duluth public input session for incorporating energy into their formal planning process.  Show up, make your voice heard, and in doing so support City staff that are trying to plan for a more efficient and sustainable tomorrow!

Feast of Namebinigiizis, Sucker Moon, Honoring the Water and Minobimaatisiiwin Feb. 13, Peace UCC Church Duluth, 5-8pm.  Join our partners at Honor the Earth for an extraordinary evening celebrating the abundance of the north country and honoring the sacred waters of our region.  Enjoy a 4-course indigenous feast benefit for their ongoing efforts to protect land and water.  For info/tickets, click here.

Film Showing: Bag It! Feb. 16, Denfeld HS Lecture Hall, 7-9pm.  Support of Duluth campaign to promote reusable carryout bags and environmentally friendly to-go containers.  Sponsored by League of Women Voters as part of the "BagitDuluth! - For the Love of Place Campaign." For more info, click here.  

Arrowhead Network Leadership meetingFeb. 28, Peace UCC Church, 7-8:30 pm. Join as we strategize and plan our spring campaigns to take action on climate change. Contact bretpence@mnipl.org for more info.

ST PETER:

Climate Refugees: An Unrecognized Challenge at Home and Abroad Feb. 28th, 7pm, Wallenberg Auditorium, Gustavus Adolphus College. Join the MNIPL River Prairie Network for the 2017 Wallenberg Lecture given by  Dr. Maria Cristina Garcia who will discuss challenges that lie ahead, both for the people who will be displaced by environmental changes, and the countries that will be forced to give them refuge. Free and open to the public.

Campus Community Climate Conversations This spring, students in Deborah Goodwin’s Religion & Ecology class will be partnering with Community Members to learn together about climate change and host climate conversations on campus and in the community. Conversations like these foster mutual trust and respect. We’ll address the importance of climate change to our lives and futures, and then, knowing we’re not alone, we’ll discuss how best to respond to its challenges.  Interested in learning more and joining us? Contact claire@mnipl.org  

Programs for Your Faith Community

Take Your Climate Organizing to the Next Level It’s not too late. Join us for the last two sessions of our Be the Spark Climate Justice Organizing and leadership development workshop series. Session 3 will take us through the process of community asset mapping; we’ll explore the application of strategic planning, and the practice of facilitating and designing gatherings that are experiential, dynamic, and most likely to inspire and utilize the full potential of participants. In Session 4 we will develop our action plans for next steps. Drawing from the working of Joanna Macy and Mary Pipher and others, we'll dive deeper into the spirituality and psychology of how to support people to be healthy and resilient in the face of our current challenges. Join us February 5,12; 4-7:30pm, St Mary’s Episcopal Church in St Paul. Register here and contact erin@mnipl.org for more information.

Is Your Faith Community Interested in Solar? MNIPL is pleased to introduce three programs in 2017 that provide opportunities for faith communities to support the fast-growing climate justice movement. MNIPL will partner with your community to understand the benefits of participating in a Community Solar Gardens or exploring on-site congregational or residential solar. Many faith communities -- or even community members themselves who are interested in solar for their homes -- will benefit from options that require zero or minimal upfront investment to become a producer of solar energy. Is your faith community interested in understanding its options for solar? Contact MNIPL to schedule a presentation and Q&A session.

Movement Builder Program We are launching our new Movement Builder Program in 2017 to scale up our organizing and support faith communities in their work on climate change. We are looking for folks in faith communities to become Community Connectors, who will serve as a liaison between MNIPL and their congregation in order to support and inspire climate action in their community. Click here to become a Community Connector today!

Volunteer at the Gandhi Mahal Interfaith Garden The Gandhi Mahal Interfaith Garden is looking for both individual and groups of volunteers for the 2017 growing season. Volunteers should fill out this form to sign up themselves, a group from your faith community, or a youth group looking for a fun & unique summer service project. New to what we’re growing at the garden? Check out our new video, Growing Together, to learn about what we’re doing to connect the dots between food, faith, and climate justice.

Firelight: Wisdom to Support & Inspire By calling on the wisdom of our faith traditions we can make sense of the tensions between joy and pain around climate change and provide sustenance for our journey for climate justice.  And so, Firelight: Wisdom to Support & Inspire, a bi-weekly emaillaunching next week with poems, prayers, songs, and articles to nourish our souls and ground our climate justice work. Sign up to receive this bi-weekly dose of renewal in your inbox by filling out this short form.

There are so many meaningful ways to take action. What calls to you? What gifts and skills can you bring to our work for a better world? Please be in touch, we’d love to explore these opportunities with you. Contact clairebaglien@mnipl.org to learn more.

How will you respond today? Know that you are surrounded by a movement of people, fully awake to this moment, each playing our own unique role to further the creation of a truly life-sustaining society.