Tag Archives: vigil

Praying with Paris — in Philadelphia and Harrisburg

The Paris climate talks (the 21st such talks) began on Monday, November 30.  People around the world held vigils and marches on 11/29 and 11/30 to show our leaders that we are with them in spirit, supporting the difficult, urgent, vital work that they are engaged in.  The people’s voices —including faith voices— have been vital in getting international leaders as far along as we are.

Check back here for a one-a-day series of actions and solutions from now until 12/11.

HarrisburgVigilMarch.11.29.2015In HARRISBURG, a multi-faith service hosted by Grace United Methodist Church was attended by about 120 people, and  made the evening news.  News coverage embedded at the bottom of this page (these links can expire quickly!)

Inspiring speakers included  Professor John Dernbach  (himself a Paris Summit delegate) and former PA Senator Franklin Kury (the author of Article1, Section 27 of our PA Constitution, and the recipient of our first PA IPL Visionary Award, back in 2011).   Father Jim Podlesny talked about the significance of the Pope’s encyclical and what it means for Paris.

 David Glasgow, music director of Unitarian Universalists of Cumberland Valley, provided opening music, with congregational singing of  We Would be One, This is My Song, and Blue Boat Home.    Harrisburg Drummers added color and energy.

Readings and reflections were offered by leaders from the Religion & Society Center, Baha’ís of Harrisburg, Lutheran Advocacy Ministry of PA, Hadee Mosque, and PA IPL. 

The event concluded on the Capitol steps with a rousing speech by former pastor and climate activist, the Rev. Jerry Miller, along with other testimonies, more drumming, and singing of Let There Be Peace on Earth.

IMG_5098In PHILADELPHIA , PA IPL member congregation First United Methodist Church of Germantown  hosted an afternoon multi-faith vigil on Monday, 11/30.  The vigil and prayer was led by Rabbi Malkah Binah Klein, the Rev. Cheryl Pyrch, and song led by Daniella Forstater.  Participants from many local congregations, including the Sisters of St Joseph, the Germantown Jewish Centre, P’nai Or, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, the Unitarian Society of Germantown, host FUMCOGSt. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, the Shalom CenterSummit Presbyterian Church, and Good Samaritan Baptist Church and more!

in PARIS
Because of the attacks in Paris last week, planned marches and outdoor gatherings were not allowed, so the Place de la Republique filled with 10,000 pairs of shoes, “marching” without their owners.  Among them: Pope Francis’ shoes, and Ban Ki Moon’s shoes.

Nearly 10,000 people linked arms to form a human chain through Paris, stretched out along about 2km of the 3 km (2 mile) route of the planned march, rather than gathered in one spot.

Religious leaders delivered a multi-faith petition signed by nearly 1.8 million yesterday, and Cristina Figueres, the Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, broke out into a dance with Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of South Africa, who was among those delivering the signatures to the talks.

HARRISBURG Fox43 coverage:

forum and vigil: Climate, Jobs, and Justice: a Moral Response to the Pope’s Urgent Message

Media coverage of the event from the NBC affiliate in Philadelphia:


Original description:
This event is a coalition event planned and supported by many partners (see below).  The event begins at the Friends’ Center, Philadelphia (scroll to bottom for address and map), and ends with a procession around City Hall to LOVE Park for a vigil.  It will take place not far from the Shale Conference happening the same day.    Flier to shareFlyer B&W Climate, Jobs, Justice-FINAL

5:30 gathering and refreshments
6:00-7:15 ” A Just Transition” forum with compelling calls to action from community, faith, labor, and health leaders
7:30 Inspiring, art-filled procession from Friends Center through downtown Philadelphia, ending in a night vigil at LOVE Park.

Please join us for a forum and vigil to lift up Pope Francis’s urgent call for climate action and economic justice!  RSVP

In June, Pope Francis published an urgent letter to people across the world: On Care for Our Common Home.”  The letter urge people everywhere to take decisive action to preserve a livable climate and to build a just economy. The Pope will bring this message to Congress and the United Nations when he visits the US this September.

As Philly prepares for his arrival, hundreds of people from all backgrounds will come together for a forum, procession, and vigil. We will reflect on what the Pope’s message means to us here in Philly. And we will call on our elected officials to commit to a rapid shift to a just and sustainable economy, with renewable energy, clean air, living wage jobs, and justice for those who are harmed most by climate change. Everyone is welcome!

What to Expect:

  • Big, beautiful art
  • Compelling calls to action from faith, community, and labor leaders
  • Presentations about energy, health, pollution, clean jobs, and strategies for building a just and sustainable economy
  • To make friends with neighbors who care about community, people, and planet

Co-sponsored by:

  • 350 Philly
  • Green Justice Philly
  • Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light
  • Physicians for Social Responsibility-Philadelphia
  • Sierra Club Southeast PA Beyond Coal Campaign
  • Shalom Center

Let us know if your organization would like to endorse the event! 

Spread the word through Facebook.

Quotes from the Pope’s Letter*PopeFrancis-01

“The urgent challenge to protect our common home includes a concern to bring the whole human family together to seek a sustainable and integral development, for we know that things can change.”
“There is an urgent need to develop policies so that, in the next few years, the emission of carbon dioxide and other highly polluting gases can be drastically reduced, for example, substituting for fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy.”
“A sense of deep communion with the rest of nature cannot be real if our hearts lack tenderness, compassion and concern for our fellow human beings. It is clearly inconsistent to combat trafficking in endangered species while remaining completely indifferent to human trafficking, unconcerned about the poor, or undertaking to destroy another human being deemed unwanted.”

HELP BUILD ART FOR THE EVENT:

We are hosting multiple Art Builds for anyone who wants to help create puppets, LED Signs, and giant banners! Learn more and RSVP for the next one here.

Vigils for Climate Leadership: Light for Lima

light for lima globe logoThis December, as world leaders meet in Lima, Peru our future is on the line. Time is running out for our leaders to reach an agreement that saves us from devastating climate change. This is why faith communities worldwide are joining  OurVoices and organizing #LightForLIMA – a global, multi-faith prayer vigil. These vigils will show our leaders that we as people of faith are praying for their efforts to bring forth valid actions to start reversing the affects of climate change.

Leader after leader at the UN meetings in New York in September spoke of the size and vibrancy of the People’s Climate March, where people of faith formed the largest contingent of all.  That moral message was heard, and provided courage for leaders to speak boldly.  Now is the time to shine our lights again, urging those same leaders from speech to action.

On Sunday, December 7th, from 8:00pm-8:30pm worldwide, people from diverse faith and
spiritual communities will gather for public vigils — lit by solar lamps. There are currently vigils
being planned around the U.S. as well as in Russia, India, South Africa, Israel, England and other countries.  Of course it’s 8-8:30 somewhere anytime, so if that time doesn’t work for your faith community, know that your vigil will “join” a vigil elsewhere no matter what time you hold it.

In PA, we can pray particularly for Don Brown‘s participation.  (Twitter, blog) Don will be in Lima leading sessions on the Ethics of Climate change, and has promised us a webinar on his return.  May his sessions in Lima be full, and may his words urge hearts and minds to urgent, hopeful action. 

Since time is short, the solar lamps make a great followup to a candlelight vigil, instead — when each lamp is purchased, that purchase also provides 2 solar lamps to energy-poverty areas of Africa, where they will provide indoor study light — brighter, safer light than kerosene can shed.  Here in PA, the high-charge models with USB ports for charging phones make an excellent backup system during power outs caused by powerful storms.

There are many resources on the Our Voices website for you to help plan, including songs and prayers, suggested order of events and fliers and posters to publicize your event.

If we’re to stop climate change we need a strong meaningful agreement that everyone can commit to. Lima is where our leaders have to nail down the fundamentals of this agreement, so that at next years’ key Paris climate talks we get a climate treaty that protects our planet and our future. Together we can show our support for this vital work.

Prayers for courage, imagination, and action, and a thunderclap!

World leaders are gathering right now in Lima, Peru, negotiating the details of the next climate change treaty to come forward in Paris in 2015.   Many opened the conference with fasting.  National leaders, climate change leaders, and faith leaders are all there, including PA IPL member Professor Don Brown, who is leading sessions on the ethics of Climate Change, and will offer a phone call and webinar for PA IPL members this winter.

People of all faiths from around the world are supporting the negotiations with prayer.  Please join them with a daily prayer moment of your own now through December 7.  Invite others to join you, hold a public vigil, or create a prayer or vigil in your own faith community, as part of an existing service, or as a standalone event.

You may find this video a compelling part of an invitation to join you in prayer.  It builds to a very strong ending that calls on each of us as individuals.

Philly-area folks may have a leg up on vigil planning, thanks to this week’s prayer workshop Continue reading

Vigils for Climate Leadership: Light for Lima

light for lima globe logoThis December, as world leaders meet in Lima, Peru our future is on the line. Time is running out for our leaders to reach an agreement that saves us from devastating climate change. This is why faith communities worldwide are joining  OurVoices and organizing #LightForLIMA – a global, multi-faith prayer vigil. These vigils will show our leaders that we as people of faith are praying for their efforts to bring forth valid actions to start reversing the affects of climate change.

Leader after leader at the UN meetings in New York in September spoke of the size and vibrancy of the People’s Climate March, where people of faith formed the largest contingent of all.  That moral message was heard, and provided courage for leaders to speak boldly.  Now is the time to shine our lights again, urging those same leaders from speech to action.

On Sunday, December 7th, from 8:00pm-8:30pm worldwide, people from diverse faith and
spiritual communities will gather for public vigils — lit by solar lamps. There are currently vigils Continue reading