Green Sanctuary: More than pretty green plants!

Every Sunday, one of the five fellowship candles is lit in recognition of our commitment to being a “Green Sanctuary” and caring for our earth and church grounds. This is the work led by your Earth Ministry Team and it involves every member of UUCWC. Being a Green Sanctuary means much more than having green plants in our Sanctuary and lighting the Earth Ministry fellowship candle!

Since March, 2010, UUCWC has been an accredited Green Sanctuary, an official designation by the UUA signifying that UUCWC:

  • “Lives out its commitment to the Earth by creating sustainable lifestyles for its members as individuals and as a faith community;
  • Is committed towards creating a religious community that has a fundamental, bottom-line, commitment to living in harmony with the Earth.”

One of the Earth Ministry’s Green Sanctuary activities occurs every Sunday and is perhaps the most tangible, visible and aromatic: our fair-trade organic coffee for fellowship hour is provided through the sales of organic products which include coffee as well as tea, chocolate and olive oil. Proceeds also benefit Earth Ministry projects such as energy conservation measures, and eco-friendly measures at UUCWC.

Green Sanctuary accreditation means that UUCWC — from its committees and teams to its members – makes choices that protect and benefit the church grounds and earth’s natural resources. We urge all to be aware of, support, and participate in these simple measures:

  • Reducing waste by composting our coffee grounds, tea bags, non-animal waste food products
  • Reusing dishwasher-safe mugs, cups, plates and reduces use of disposal paper products as much as possible for churchwide events
  • Recycling paper, aluminum, glass materials as much as possible
  • Reducing use of harmful non-biological pesticides and herbicides on our grounds and using eco-friendly cleaning products within the facility
  • Reducing mowed lawn area by establishing meadows and reduced mowed areas
  • Growing fresh produce for meals at HomeFront tutoring events and our Food Ministry program and planting native trees, shrubs and other plants

The Earth Ministry Team, led by Barbara Drew and Al Johnson, sponsors Green Tables (info tables during fellowship hours) and slide presentations on matters such as Climate Change, Meaning of Organics and Eco-friendly Home Cleaning Products. We also advise and work with our Buildings and Grounds Committees to incorporate “green” measures to care for our trees, gardens, Memorial Garden, and the church structure through lighting, water conservation, and energy savings measures including our rooftop solar panels. An affiliated group organizes outdoor nature adventures every third Sunday of the month. And yes, we do take care of the beautiful living greenery in our Sanctuary, lobby, and Crossings Room!

You can help support us directly with your purchasing power: Earth Ministry sponsors several sales which directly benefit UUCWC and our projects:

  • Organic Product Sales: held every other week after each service: coffee, tea, chocolate (bars and baking cocoa) and olive oil are on sale these following dates for the remainder of 2017: 10/8, 10/22, 11/5, 11/19, 12/3 and 12/17.
  • Used Book Sales: held seasonally – the next one is October 22 after each service. You may donate books up to one week before the sale. Your help is welcome with the set and take down, and of course with the purchase of books, bargain prices for a great cause!

Join us! We’ll help you to find out how easy it is being green. Contact us at