Hundreds of UUs were among the more than 2,000 water protectors and allies who joined the Treaty People Gathering over June 5-8. Over this powerful weekend, the Multifaith Delegation heeded the call of Anishinaabeg leaders to bring shared prayer, witness and direct action to help stop the Line 3 tar sands pipeline in northern Minnesota.
Throughout the weekend, we were reminded that we are all treaty people: treaties are the supreme law of the land, and they protect all of us. Treaties protect the Anishinaabeg right to hunt, fish and gather -- but those rights depend on the water being protected. On Friday night, the Multifaith camp gathered with Winona LaDuke on the shores of a small lake to share a water ceremony and Havdalah ritual. The Mississippi River and its watershed provided much-needed replenishment as we braved record-breaking -- and heart-breaking -- temperatures, likely linked to climate change.
Treaties also bestow responsibility to both parties: this shared history grounds us in the shared purpose to protect the sacred. Several UUs were among the almost 300 water protectors who were arrested, many facing gross misdemeanor charges of Trespass on the Property of a Pipeline, which carries with it a fine of $3,000 and/or a year in prison. Days after the action, an appeals court decided to uphold approval of the permits, and President Biden remains silent.
But the river of liberation is long, and our UU faith remains a well of strength and clarity -- we know another world is not only possible, but on its way. Actions continue on the frontlines in northern Minnesota, and your ongoing witness and solidarity is needed. Whether you can act from near or far, there is a role for you in the fight to honor treaties and ensure Indigenous communities thrive.
You can read the complete reflection from the weekend of action HERE.
In faith and solidarity,
Aly Tharp, UUMFE Program Director
Amelia Diehl, UUYACJ Network Coordinator & UUMFE Communications Associate
Doris Marlin, UUMFE Boardmember
PS: As always, UUMFE appreciates your commitment to the work we do together, and the generous outpouring of financial support this spring. Give to UUMFE at any time throughout the year to help sustain our ministry!
Follow-up Actions from Treaty People Gathering to Stop Line 3
1. Make your donation to the Treaty People Gathering fund, which will be used to pay off the fines incurred by arrestees as a result of the #StopLine3 direct actions. Fill out this form to help us track Unitarian Universalist contributions toward our goal of collectively donating $100k to the fund.
2. Organize an Action Hour today to tell President Biden: Stop Line 3
3. Train with the Multifaith Network: Tuesday, June 29 at 12-3pm PT / 1 MT / 2 CT / 3 CT - grow the Multifaith movement to Stop Line 3 and create a just transition by attending this training with Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light and GreenFaith. Real cost is $50, free for those who attended the Treaty People Gathering. - REGISTER
See you at General Assembly 2021!
Don’t miss the amazing variety of powerful programming offered by UU Ministry For Earth and the Create Climate Justice Initiative! Registration for the all-virtual UUA General Assembly, June 23-27, 2021, remains open throughout the event, and on demand workshops are already available for viewing. These programs will ground, inspire and mobilize attendees in the shared work for climate and environmental justice.
Join the UU Drawdown Initiative!
It’s not too late! Join this final push to reach the UU Drawdown Initiative goal of 10,000 actions! Grow the collective UU climate justice movement with science-based, solution-oriented steps that bend the curve into DRAWDOWN, “the future point in time when levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere stop climbing and start to steadily decline” (source).
Learn with your fellow UUs about effective climate drawdown solutions by watching the Action Presentation recordings posted here.
Skill Up with the Climate Activist Toolkit - Summer Workshop Series
Wednesdays, July 28, August 11, August 25
3-4:30 PM PT / 4-5:30 MT / 5-6:30 CT / 6-7:30 ET
This series, offered by UUMFE partner organization Elders Climate Action, will cover a range of topics including Tools for Meeting with Elected Officials, The Power of Personal Stories, and Communicating for Climate Action --- providing helpful skills, tools and strategies relevant to climate advocates working at local, state, and federal levels.
Poetry for “Liberation on the Land”
UU Farmer Minister Ariel Aaronson-Eaves recently facilitated a five-session discussion series on “Liberation on the Land” for a small group. Participants explored farming and foraging as different methods of community resourcing of foods; land and labor as sites of power; and seeds and soil as collective creations, ultimately finding their way to dreaming together on what healing and regeneration look like. Read on for one of three poems, inspired by conversations shared by the group; read more through the link below.
O Mighty Nurturer
Source of life and food, continually giving forth
However can I show my appreciation?
How may I celebrate you, acknowledge you, thank you?
I long for a spiritual connection to you,
one possible only through reciprocity
Through a dance of co-creation
of power sharing
I seek to learn the steps
To know them in my body
That each day I feel connection
To you, to myself, to the past and the future,
To the collective human murmuration
Let us heal together
Let us know, and affirm, and honor each other's worth
May this labor of love bring forth connection, beauty, and harmony
Calling all UU Young Adults! Help UUYACJ Choose New Leadership!
Be part of the next wave of leadership for the growing Young Adults for Climate Justice Network! Learn more about the Network Roles open to Young Adults (ages 18-35), and the selection process, which will use sociocracy. Any UU Young Adult (ages ~18-35) can be part of nominating (including self-nomination) and/or affirming incoming leadership for several roles to start July 1. Please fill out this scheduling survey ASAP so we can find a time in late June that works for most network members.
UnKoch My Campus Teach-In
Monday, June 28 at 4pm PT / 5 MT / 6 CT / 7 ET
UU Young Adults for Climate Justice is excited to welcome Jasmine Banks, UnKoch My Campus’s Executive Director, for this teach-in about the national campaign disrupting corporate influence and protecting democracy in higher education, think-tanks, policy and beyond. While this event is open to all, we ask participants to center the voices and experiences of youth and young adults.
Celebrating Spring for Change 2021!
UUMFE wishes to extend sincere gratitude to everyone who participated in this year’s Spring for Change: A Season of Sacred Activism. With over 100 participating congregations, thousands of Unitarian Universalists explored Pathways to Healing and Regeneration on a faith journey and sacred practice of learning, reflection, practice, and action. Stay tuned for more follow-up and announcements about the theme of Spring for Change 2022!
The UUMFE Board and staff extend our deepest gratitudes to outgoing Board member Ariel Aaronson-Eves and staff member Amelia Diehl and wish them well on their next endeavors!
Ariel has served on the Board for four years, during which she has shared her wisdom and experience from her earlier career in organic farming, as a Young Adult climate activist, and as a Starr King School for the Ministry seminarian and student body president. We congratulate her on her upcoming ordination and wish her every success as she begins her ministerial career!
Amelia has been building with the UU Young Adults for Climate Justice Network for the past five years, first joining in 2016 as the Communications Coordinator before serving as the Network Coordinator since 2018. More recently, she has been our resident blog manager, writer, and managing editor for our monthly eNewsletters and weekly eVents notices, and a valuable member of our website team. We wish her happiness and fulfillment as she begins the Environmental Humanities graduate program at the University of Utah!
BONUS RECIPE: Juneteenth Bowl
“Indigenous to Africa and immortalized and beloved by America, sorghum, sweet potato, black-eyed peas, collards and peanuts come together in one bowl. It's nutrient-dense, rainbow-bright and flavor-packed. It’s like Juneteenth in a bowl.” - Ellen Kanner, Soulful Vegan