Issues we care about

We try to practice what we preach.  In addition to our own outreach ministries and those we support (see Serving Together), we have committed to caring about social and environmental justice issues within our own walls.

 

Like our Creation Care page on Facebook!

 

Fair Trade as Social Justice

We are proud to serve Equal Exchange fairly traded coffee.
Founded in 1986, Equal Exchange is the oldest and largest for-profit Fair Trade company in the United States.  Their mission is to build long-term trade partnerships that are economically just and environmentally sound, to foster mutually beneficial relationships between farmers and consumers, and to demonstrate, through their success, the contribution of worker co-operatives and Fair Trade to a more equitable, democratic and sustainable world.

 

On most Palm Sundays, each worshiper receives a palm frond in remembrance of the beginning of Holy Week.

Each Eco-Palm is fairly traded and sustainably grown and harvested in Guatemala or Mexico.

 

Creation Care:  Earthwise Stewardship

We have committed to living as more conscious stewards of God’s—and our—beautiful earth.  Here are a few of the ways we’re doing that—we’re always looking for more!

 

Green Hospitality:

We use glasses and mugs instead of earth-unfriendly single-use plastic and styrofoam, and wash reusable plates and cutlery to lessen the load on the landfill and Mother Earth.

The kitchen dishwasher is utilized by groups and ministries in efforts to reduce water and energy waste.

Coffee grounds are worked into a church member’s compost bin.

 

Energy Efficiency:

Several old thermostats were replaced by digital programmable ones (2009).

Dozens of single pane windows were replaced with new energy-wise windows (2011).

All interior and exterior light fixtures or bulbs were upgraded to energy efficient LED or CFL styles through Puget Sound Energy’s small business rebate program (2012-13).

Energy efficient front entry doors were installed (2015).  [They also provide an automatic opener for ADA compliance and a more secure code system replacing the many keys distributed over the decades.]

 

Recycling:

The recycling center is closed during COVID restrictions;
watch for information about periodic safe, drive-thru drop-offs!

During 2009’s A Week in Mission: Creation Care volunteers repurposed old fence sections and garbage cans into a recycling center. Volunteers took items to home curbside bins or drop-off centers.

The in-house recycling program soon outgrew our home bins. In 2012, FCC was accepted into a pilot commercial recycling program. All items previously taken home with volunteers are now picked up (except glass).

In 2014 an Environmental Stewardship Team was formed. Through commitments to Creation Care, the “Green Team” soon achieved Green Chalice Tier One Certification status through the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Green Chalice ministry.

Recycling efforts were enhanced in 2015 by adding a full recycling center.  These church-generated items are recycled at First Christian:

Curbside pickup:

  • Mixed paper:  Blue recycle bins are placed around the church for non-food-contaminated paper.
  • Metal cans, plastic bottles:  Church-generated recyclables are placed in bins in the building or outside the kitchen.  The same guidelines apply as residential recycling:  no foil, no glass.  Many plastic containers are accepted.  (For lids, or lightweight or crinkly plastics – see below**).
  • Cardboard:  Flattened and stacked, may be recycled in the gray toter outside the kitchen.

Volunteer pickup:

The expanded in-house recycle program allows friends of FCC to drop off items that can’t be recycled in the home pickup system.  Marked bins for these items may be found in the kitchen hallway.

Glass:  Clean, unbroken, church-generated only glass is collected and delivered to recycling centers by a volunteer.

**Non-curbside plastics:  Plastics which are not accepted by the commercial recycling company (see above**) such as lids and caps, clamshell containers, and crinkly/lightweight plastics may all be brought to FCC’s back hall bins, where volunteers then transport them to nearby recycling centers.

Batteries:  Batteries of all types may be recycled; there are two bins for sorting.  Batteries with any evidence of corrosion should be thrown in the trash.

*Styrofoam:  Put Styrofoam pieces in the bin; make sure packing peanuts are enclosed in a recyclable paper bag.  Clean, unstained food containers such as cups, meat trays, and take-out containers are also accepted.  Make sure they are washed and free of all food debris.

Method soap pouches:  Method brand refill pouches are sent back to the manufacturer for recycling.

Burned out light bulbs:  No longer accepting incandescent bulbs; please discard at home.
LED and fluorescent bulbs may be recycled at church.
We also recycle church-generated fluorescent tubes.

Used ink & toner cartridges and discarded cell phones:
Printer ink/toner cartridges and old cell phones are accepted.

Natural cork:  Corks can be recycled into new products by ReCork.

Marking pens:  All brands and types, including dry erase, highlighters, and more!

Shaving materials:  All brands of blades and razors (handle/blade systems and disposable units, as well as replaceable-blade cartridges), and their rigid plastic and flexible plastic bag packaging.

Prescription and Over-the-counter pill bottles with lids:  ALL BOTTLES with lids MUST have the labels removed.  Bottles not conforming to these rules will be thrown in the garbage.  These will be used by Doctors Without Borders.