United Church of Christ of Chapel Hill (UCC-CH) is my home church. My parents are committed members and, as a returning college grad, I feel excited about being part of this faith community. Going through an energy audit with my church pastor to learn about the church’s efforts for energy savings and lowering our congregation’s impact on the earth gave me that excitement and inspiration.
This summer I am interning with NC Interfaith Power & Light (NCIPL) and had the privilege of participating in an “Energy Savings Analysis” at United Church Chapel Hill. As we surveyed the walls and walked down the halls I listened to Pastor Rick Edens, who I remember along with his wife, Jill, preaching to our congregation on Sundays throughout my childhood, tell me now about how the church has worked to lower its impact on the earth. I felt rush after rush of pride as NCIPL’s chief energy auditor, John Seymour, continued to make impressed recognitions of the energy-saving practices already in place. I wondered at how I had missed out on so much over recent years of spotty attendance and sleeping in.
The magic of witnessing this energy audit was that so much consideration had been given to energy efficiency since the construction of the new building 13 years ago. Hearing Pastor Rick review the building plan and system efficiency throughout the church showed me how much my congregation valued environmental conservation. As an intern at NCIPL I was excited, but as part of the congregation, I was proud of and impressed by the work and commitment my church showed.
NCIPL’s work touched me personally at this energy audit for the first time. I got to see firsthand how the emPOWERed program can serve churches. And I got to feel firsthand the excitement and pride of being part of an engaged congregation going through the process of matching its lifestyle to its beliefs in cherishing creation. Now, after the audit, I feel blessed to be part of a faith community that is committed to such action and am inspired to re-engage further with UCCH and its programs.
NCIPL opened my eyes to this blessing. We support faith communities as they engage their faith in new ways through action. I hope that you will support us in spreading this kind of inspiration to communities throughout our beloved home state. Let other’s blessings be revealed to them as mine was to me.
By: Joey Shea, NCIPL Intern, Member of UCC-CH Congregation
NCIPL offers Energy Savings Analysis (energy audits) at no charge to congregations. Contact Us to learn more about how to schedule one for your worship facility.