The 2008 Book of Discipline places responsibility for stewardship within the scope of the Finance Committee unless a separate group is formed. The responsibility of stewardship encompasses many applications including environmental stewardship and caring for God’s creation. As a starting point for considering environmental stewardship at the local church level, we recommend consideration of the practices below as a minimum. Your church may be able to go far beyond these basics in caring for and preserving the environment.
Food Service at Meetings
- Use paper rather than plastic cups and plates.
- Use paper cups and plates made from recycled materials.
- Do not use Styrofoam cups and plates, even for hot or warm food or drink.
- Do not serve food in Styrofoam take-out containers.
- Use hot beverage cups made from cardboard.
- Consider providing plastic or ceramic tumblers or coffee cups and eco-friendly water bottles for use in church functions or at meetings.
- Have ice water available in a pitcher and not in individual plastic bottles.
- Have iced tea available in a pitcher.
- If canned sodas are provided, then a recycle container for aluminum should be made available.
- The Finance Committee and/or Stewardship Committee should model eco-friendly practices and encourage these same practices by all committees in the local church.
- Minutes from previous meetings should be placed in a PowerPoint presentation where possible and read and considered by all. Print copies should be provided to the secretary and staff. Print copies should be available for any members with visual impairment.
- Presentations of committee reports can also be done in PowerPoint so as to eliminate having to make so many paper copies.
- When all work of the Council or a committee is completed, any extra copies of presentations, etc. should be recycled.
- Have a container for recycling paper in each meeting room.
- Use a dry erase board instead of pen and paper whenever possible for written activities of each committee.
- If paper copies are needed, the church should consider using paper made from recycled materials.
- Travel to meetings of the committees is encouraged to be made by carpooling, with special attention to the means of transportation that would be least impactful to the environment.
- Any paper, cardboard, glass and plastic should be recycled – boxes, wrapping materials, etc.
- The church should provide recycling containers and pick up service where available.
- When materials are purchased from local retailers, consider the use of cloth shopping bags for hauling those items.
- Set HVAC settings at a reasonable temperature so as to save on the electricity bills.