Last week, Rev. Craig C. Roshaven, UUA Witness Ministries Director, and Barbara Ford, UUMFE member and past-President, asked UUs to join them in non-violent civil disobedience on the Tar Sands Action Interfaith Day .

Since then, a number of UUs have contacted Robin Nelson, UUA Environmental Stewardship Manager, to indicate that they will join Craig and Barbara in risking arrest. We are so excited to see the momentum for this movement building and encourage others to join and support us in whatever ways they can.

The Tar Sands Action started on August 20th and will continue until September 3rd.  On Saturday, August 20th 75 people were arrested and 50 of those were held over the weekend awaiting arraignment on Monday.  Bill McKibben, author, educator, environmentalist, and one of the driving forces behind the Tar Sands Action, passed along a statement from the central cell block where he was held since Saturday through Monday saying “Hello everyone! We don’t need sympathy, we need company. It’s clear to us that police were hoping to deter this action, and it’s equally clear to us the opposite will be the result.”

Terry Tempest Williams said this about Tar Sands: “The act of civil disobedience is the act of taking our anger and turning it into sacred rage. It is a personal and collective gesture of resistance and insistence….We can travel to Washington, D.C. mentally, create an image of support to those who can be there on the front lines physically…. We can participate in building this climate change movement, each in our own way, each in our own time with the gifts that are ours. We can become the fire of hopeful action that burns through corruption and complacency. We can be the river of concern that cools our sweltering planet. And we will be the voice of resistance that says yes to a more compassionate way of being in the world and face those who say no with the force of our steady gaze.”

Ways in which you can support Tar Sands Action Interfaith Day and the UUs who are participating:

  • Attend All Souls DC service at 10:15am on Sunday, August 28th where Tar Sands Action participants will be recognized.
  • Join Tar Sands Action folks for lunch after the service to show your support.
  • Attend the rally at Lafayette Park on Monday, August 29th around 9:45am to show support for those risking arrest.
  • Risk arrest by participating in non-violent civil disobedience on Monday, August 29th – a required interfaith gathering and training and legal briefing for our witness will take place on Sunday, August 28th from 4-9 p.m.
  • Sign the Stop the Tar Sands Petition. The petition will be delivered to President Obama during the Tar Sands Action.
  • Sign the Religious Tar Sands Petition.
  • Write an oped to  your local news editor. (Check out the editorial in Monday’s New York Times.)
  • Talk with your friends, neighbors, colleagues, congregation members, etc. about the Key Stone XL Pipeline and how it is a danger to our environment and get them to take action.
  • Make use of the End Big Oil subsides tool kit.
  • Make a donation to the UUMFE or become a member.  The Unitarian Universalist Ministry for Earth (UUMFE) is a non-profit organization whose supporters envision a world in which reverence, gratitude, and care for the living Earth is central to the lives of all people.

 For Earth,

UU Ministry for Earth (UUMFE) Board
UUA Environmental Stewardship
UUA Witness Ministries

Nancy King Smith, Co-Chair UUMFE
Irene Keim, Co-Chair UUMFE
Barbara Ford, UUMFE member and past President
Terry Wiggins, Former UUMFE Treasurer
Pamela Sparr, Environmental Justice Consultant to UUMFE
Robin Nelson, UUA Environmental Stewardship Manager
Rev. Craig C. Roshaven, UUA Witness Ministries Director
Kat Liu, UUA Witness Ministries Program Associate
Rev. Terry Ellen, Executive Director of UUs for Social Justice
Jo Ann Bachar, First Unitarian Society of Milwaukee
Linda S. Cooper, First UU Society in Burlington, VT
Lynn Dash
Wes Ernsberger, UU Congregation of Binghamton, NY
Celeste McCollough Howard, Unitarian Universalist Community Church of Washington County, Hillsboro OR
Vincent Pawlowski, UU Congregation of North West Tucson, AZ


About the Author
Robin Nelson


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