Earth Care Ministry
to be Stewards of Creation
Eastminster is in its sixth year as a PC USA Earth Care Congregation after first being certified on 2/15/2018. In order to continually become better stewards of creation, we focus on earth care through four areas of emphasis: facilities, worship, education, and outreach.
Located along the Indian River and less than a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, Eastminster is committed to helping to protect our beautiful environment and ensure that it is there for future generations to enjoy.
Ongoing Earth Care Commitments
- Selecting fair-trade organic coffee for serving at events.
- Using paper products rather than foam.
- Reusing our dishes, silverware, and cloth tablecloths, instead of disposable when practical to reduce waste.
- Setting the HVAC system to cool when rooms are frequently in use.
- Finding second-hand items rather than purchasing new.
- Maintaining a selection of earth-care-related books for members to check out in the EPC library.
- Using an artificial Christmas tree.
- EPiC is paperless and offers communion by intinction.
Areas of Focus for 2021
- Host an Earth FRED talk in the spring.
- Offer outdoor worship options.
- Facilities will continue to replace broken lighting with LEDs and furniture with gently used second hand furniture, rather than purchasing new.
- Participate in workshops offered online by Creation Justice Ministries.
Sampling of Previous Projects
- In spring of 2020, we hosted the "E" of the spring Adult Education FRED talks: Earth Care. Dr. Wheeler discussed Eastminster’s commitment to earth care and other recent earth care and environmental developments globally. After the talk, there were activities for all ages. The tweens helped to pick up trash along our shoreline while engaging in discussions about creation. The children had a hands-on planting of vegetables that they could take home and watch grow. Adults got their hands dirty replanting part of the landscaping outside of the EPC Library with plants native to Florida.
- The Preschool received a mini-grant from the Central Florida Presbytery to build an educational garden.
- In 2019, Adult Education hosted a “God’s Green Earth” Sunday School series to help members understand the water systems in the area and how to use native plants for landscaping. Also, the Facilities committee conducted a full audit of the HVAC system. By reprogramming the system to minimize air conditioning in rooms when they were not in use, we substantially reduced both the electric bill and our carbon footprint.
- Living Shoreline: Eastminster partnered with Restore Our Shores (a lagoon conservation and restoration organization that is part of Brevard Zoo) to restore our shoreline. The church hopes that this will contribute to the health of the aquatic ecosystem as well as increasing the stability and resilience of the shoreline. We helped to bag oysters, build small reefs, and establish live oysters on the reefs that we built. In addition to helping to filter water, the oyster reefs will help to stabilize the shoreline. The living shoreline also includes sea grass and mangroves that were planted during the restoration process (a few mangroves were already present, and others were planted). The shoreline is still monitored, and Restore Our Shores confirmed that the reefs and oysters are doing well. Take a walk along the shoreline and check out the educational signs about living shorelines to learn more!