Saturday, February 1, 2014

Pete Seeger RIP; Renewables; Day is done

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Pete passed on this week.


Another old friend
Rev. John Helt of Colgate WI
sent this letter into the Journal-
Sentinel this week:


Doing our part on climate change

By John Helt
Jan. 29, 2014
·                      (0) COMMENTS
President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech on Tuesday night offered a renewed call to action on climate change. The president put it bluntly: "Climate change is a fact." As he did in last year's message, Obama framed the issue in the context of a moral responsibility: This generation owes it to the next to reduce carbon pollution.
As a person of faith, I was gratified to hear this. I am very concerned about the effect of climate change on God's Creation, and on our most vulnerable brothers and sisters. I believe that as people of faith called to be stewards of Creation, we are obliged to act to protect our children's future.
The latest United Nations report on climate change issues a stark warning of "severe economic disruption" in addition to environmental catastrophes if we fail to reduce emissions for another 15 years. The next generation will have to resort to drastic measures to maintain the livability of the planet if we do not act now.
The recent holiday honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a reminder of the power of a moral calling and how faith leaders can mobilize our country with spiritual and nonviolent tactics to address social injustice. That's why Interfaith Power & Light is organizing 1,500 congregations and 500,000 people of faith in a National Preach-In on Climate Change this Valentine's Day Weekend.
The theme of the Preach-In is "Doing our Part," and congregations all over the country are doing their part by using energy more efficiently, greening their facilities to help curb climate change and speaking out in favor of Environmental Protection Agency action to safeguard our climate.
Our church, for instance, installed an array of solar panels three years ago, which has reduced our utility cost for indoor electrical power to less than zero most months. (Yes, we get a credit rather than a bill!)
It is good news that the president seems to understand the urgency of the climate change issue, and that he is communicating it on a national stage. It is good news that the EPA is releasing first-ever limits on carbon pollution from power plants. It is good news that the United States recently brokered a side deal with China to phase out some of the most potent climate-warming industrial chemicals.
But this will not be enough. We need action from every sector: federal, state and local governments, as well as the private sector. We need a galvanization of the country, along the lines of the civil rights movement, and we all must do our part.
We often look for leadership from our government but fail to recognize that our leaders are looking back at us to inform their decisions. No president forces major social advancements by himself. Franklin D. Roosevelt understood that when he responded to entreaties from the labor leader A. Philip Randolph by agreeing and then saying, "Now go out and make me do it."
That's exactly what congregations all over America will be aiming to do in February: our part to show the president and Congress that we must act on climate change before it's too late.
Rev. John Helt is vice president of the board of WisconsinInterfaith Power & Light (


Play this, on your browser per above:


We three kings of orient are
bearing gifts we traverse afar
field and fountain
moor and mountain
following yonder star


and the remnants and next-year memorabilia
are being packed away
carried upstairs to the storeroom

Debi's manger scene is packed in its crate
and the Haitian Three Kings
that make an annual brief trip to the 1st Congregational
church altar are nested together and ready
for storage till next year.

This year, history department chair at Carroll
Prof. Kimberly Redding
incorporated Xeroxed copies of our Kings
bearing their gifts
in one of her stellar bulletin boards
in concert with Joan Kiser
and the raccoon failed to get a picture of that

So these old Plowshares-purchased
objets d'art
made from oil drumheads in Haiti
saw extra duty during the 2013 yuletide season


It is Kimberly's son William
who often sits next to me
in the Peanut Gallery at 9:30 AM
Sunday, 100 E. Broadway, downtown Waukesha
Come and see

We anticipate the next church pancake supper
in April this year.
William and I will be there.



... just a pinch of salt...