Hanukkah Sameach! Chag urim sameach!

As we enter the third night of the eight days of the Festival of Light, Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light wishes a very happy Hanukkah to all who are celebrating.

As a scholar of religious and cultural history by training, the festival of Hanukkah is of particular interest to me. The commemoration of the recovery of Jerusalem and the rededication of the Second Temple and the Maccabean Revolt more than two thousand years ago bears many levels of varying meaning across the Jewish diaspora. I would tonight like to lift up but one which struck me on the first night of Hanukkah.

The tradition, the miracle, of the amount of one night’s pure olive oil being used to light the menorah for eight nights in the Second Temple speaks profoundly to several important elements of faith and our connection to the environment and our Creator. For many people of the Mediterranean the olive tree, and the resources it provides in both oil and olives, is universally held as an important symbol of life, longevity, and memory. Olive trees can last for 500 years and take time and care to cultivate, yet they survive, grow, and thrive in fairly dry climates with minimal soil. They are handed down from generation to generation and they, like many landmarks and forms of nature, provide a connection, deep roots for families and individuals with the land and their heritage.

The burning of the oil as a symbolic ritual, necessitating pure olive oil, and providing continuous light during the period of rededication and restoration of the Second Temple, speaks to the constancy of faith and its connection both to culture and the bounty of the earth. New oil took time to collect, press, and process. Cultivating and reaping the bounty of our planet takes time and care, but if done properly it can sustain all of us physically and spiritually.

Most importantly, the culmination of these symbols is the miraculous act of the Creator. The burning of the light represents the presence of the Creator in the Temple, in this moment, and in the lives of the Jewish people. The miracle showed through the ongoing flame that each night the Creator held them as they held their faith.

I hope to uplift the idea that our faith traditions can uplift us in the important work ahead of creating connections, working with constancy, and drawing strength from our deep roots to practice Tikkun olam (healing acts) in the garden of Creation.

Support Your Community, Clean Air, and Creation! #GivingTuesday

Before today is over please consider giving to PA IPL. https://paipl.salsalabs.org/onlinedonation/index.html

PA IPL is a mission driven organization and to fulfil that mission we need your support. The vast majority of our operating funds comes from individual gifts small and large from people like you.

Your tax-deductible gift to Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light on #GivingTuesday will not only help us plant more trees (10,000+ this year) but it will also change lives through flood mitigation, environmental education, and advocacy in Harrisburg, DC, and your own town!

As you may already know, 11/30 is Giving Tuesday – an international day of giving where people all over the world donate to the charities they love.

Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light has a goal to reach $10,000 by the end of the year. Through our online donation page you can submit a donation of any size or even sign up for a recurring donation.

With your help PA IPL will:

  • Plant thousands more trees to restore natural habitats, sequester carbon, and mitigating flooding
  • Reach more Frontline communities
  • Weatherize more houses of worship
  • Hold more sessions with elected officials
  • Organize more projects across Pennsylvania
  • Continue to be a voice for communities and individuals of faith and conscience in climate change

Green Holiday Gift Ideas for a Healthier Planet

With the Main Line Chapter of PA IPL

On Monday, November 22nd at 7:30pm, the PA IPL Main Line Chapter is welcoming Steve Beebee, owner of the Community Eco Store in Phoenixville, PA, an all-volunteer boutique for Eco-friendly lifestyles. He will offer ideas and information about green products that can make great holiday gifts without making a big negative impact on the Earth in a program following this month’s Main Line IPL Chapter meeting. Zoom in and be inspired!

We would like to invite nonmembers to register and join us in our discussion of green gift ideas.

The holidays are comingand they are a great way to show your loved ones you care about them, and the future of the planet! For our November 22nd program, we will hear about shopping options that allow for a more healthy planet. Bring your best green gift idea!!! If you cannot join us on the 22nd, please send us your gift idea to be included in our Holiday Shopping List for a Healthier Planet.

There will be time for Q and A.

Please be in touch if you have any questions. Members should have received the Zoom link and it will be sent again closer to Monday, November 22. Nonmembers can register here.

Those who wish to join the program with Steve Beebee about green gift ideas please enter the room at 7:30pm.
– Members use the same link to access the Main Line IPL Chapter meeting at 7:00pm as well as for Steve Beebee’s program at 7:30pm.

What Climate Solutions We Have Achieved Globally, Nationally, & Within Pennsylvania

In Partnership with the Jewish Earth Alliance (JEA)

Join us Wednesday, November 17 at 7:00pm for a meeting as part of PA IPL‘s ongoing partnership with Jewish Earth Alliance (JEA).

What Climate Solutions We Have Achieved Globally, Nationally, and Within Pennsylvania

National and International updates from Jonathan Lacock-Nisly, Director of Faithful Advocacy for Interfaith Power & Light (DC.MD.NoVA)
Pennsylvania updates from Flora Cardoni, Field Director for PennEnvironment
Spiritual offering by Marci Wilf, Middot/character instructor, speaking on gratitude

Register here for this event.

We also encourage everyone to write thank you notes to Casey and their representative if they voted for BBB/infrastructure. We will be writing letters in the meeting as well. If you need help on how to call or email them and what to say, please contact Phyllis for assistance.

Please submit your letters directly to Phyllis as attachments to your email message. We will deliver them by email directly to the appropriate staffer.

REGISTER NOW and receive an email providing the Zoom link for the meeting.

We hope to see you on November 17th at 7:00pm!

Gardeners, Go Native!

Main Line IPL Monthly Chapter Meeting – October 2021

October 25, 7:00 PM – 8:45 PM

For our October 25th program Leslie Bass, a Penn State Montgomery County Master Gardener Volunteer, will offer tips and advice to gardeners.

Now is a terrific time to plant your native perennials! Leslie will speak about why native plants are so important to the environment, and offer practical advice on purchasing native plants, as well as what to look for. There will be time for Q and A.

The Main Line chapter of PA IPL meets each month on fourth Monday evenings, 7:00-8:45 via Zoom.  We email a link to people on the Tuesday prior — often with a bit of special program description.  We hope you will join us!

To make sure you get the links, reach out to conveners Courtenay Willcox and Chuck Marshall by emailing them at mainline@paipl.org — and be sure to add mainline@paipl.org to your contacts!