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From the Mission and Outreach Committee

Mission and Outreach Committee — Steve Boisvert, Chair

  1. Please Continue to Pray for Haiti

Although it has dropped out of the news lately, our brothers and sisters in Haiti are still undergoing a very traumatic and challenging period in their tumultuous history.  It is to the point where the Haiti Water Team has been advised it is not safe for us to travel there.  During this period, we have not forgotten our brothers and sisters, many of whom have become more than partners in our mission, but friends.  Our efforts to help provide some relief have included sending funds to:  1) Hearts United with Haiti, a group that has been doing wonderful work in Haiti and has staff on the ground, (2) our partner orphanage in Valliere to help feed the children there, and (3) a water delivery bike to our partners in Chaveneau to support a wider distribution of purified water.

Please continue to keep Haiti in your prayers as we hope and pray they will someday be blessed with the peace and security we so often take for granted.

  1. Eco-Justice Team Update

Since BHCC’s Eco-Justice Team was created in the summer of 2018, it has been exploring ways to have our church be more responsible stewards of God’s creation.

The team’s Guiding Principles are as follows:

  1. We are called to be stewards of God’s created order.

  2. The irresponsible use of the world’s resources is a form of injustice against life and future generations.

  3. We all participate in forms of ecological injustice that must be named and resisted, particularly as the worst impacts fall on the vulnerable and poor.

Over the past months, members have noticed several changes in how the amount of landfill waste Coffee Hour and congregational meals produce by replacing disposable cups and plates with mugs, water and juice cups, and plates that our new “Bubble Brigade” washes after Coffee Hour and events.  Starting in June, BHCC will be using corn based communion cups that will be composted.

On the team’s behalf, Alan Hohlfelder conducted an energy use study that tracked our gas and electric use and expenses from 2014 – 2018.  Since new windows and boilers were installed in 2015, our energy use has dropped almost 22%, saving us around $14,000 per year.

The Eco-Justice Team meets the second Thursday of the month at 8:05 p.m. (after Choir) in the Conference Room.  All are welcome to join this exciting opportunity to impact God’s creation in a positive way.

“Reuse, repurpose, recycle.”  Have you heard this in recent days?  The phrase is used to encourage responsible stewardship of the planet, but it is reminiscent of one our grandparents used to get through the depression.  Remember, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without?”  The modern push for sustainability recalls the need for frugality once exhibited by our forebears.  Like them, do you have any suggestions for environmentally safe and inexpensive things to do around the house?  For example, white vinegar is a cheap and effective cleaning substance for kitchens and bathrooms, and is great for windows, as well as being a fabric softener!  Combine it with water to lessen the smell, and add a few drops of your favorite essential oil if you like.  White vinegar at full strength also kills weeds in driveways or sidewalks.  What about using vinegar and baking soda in clogged drains, a la elementary school volcanos?  OK, it won’t unclog bad clogs, but it’s worth a try before you pour poison down there!

We’d like any suggestions that you’re willing to share with us.  Call the church office, or speak with one of the team (you’ll usually find one of us washing dishes after coffee hour).  We hope to further this discussion, and spread the word about things we can all do!

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