Young Environmentalists

These children helped clean up downtown Union Sunday as part of the Zion United Church of Christ Mission 4/1 Earth. There are many environmentally friendly events and activities planned during “50 great days” locally and nationwide.


A Union church is taking steps to make the community greener.

Zion United Church of Christ is taking part in the Mission 4/1 Earth, a 50-day venture that includes volunteering, planting trees and a letter writing campaign.

Norma Klemme, who is a member of the church committee in charge of the mission, said this is part of a national and statewide United Church of Christ campaign that began March 31, Easter Sunday, and runs through May 19, Pentecost Sunday.

The event also encompasses Earth Day and Arbor Day and is held in conjunction with the National Arbor Foundation efforts.

Klemme noted that there are local goals of 1,000 hours of activities to “help green the Earth,” to plant 100 trees and to write 50 letters of advocacy.

Those goals are intended to help meet national goals, which include:

• Collectively offer more than 1 million hours of engaged earth care, including cleanup, advocacy, education, and behavioral changes that will impact the environment;

• Collectively plant more than 100,000 trees locally and globally in partnership with the National Arbor Day Foundation and the UCC’s denominational partners around the world; and

• Collectively write and send more than 100,000 advocacy letters on environmental concerns to elected officials and local and national newspapers.

Groups are encouraged to engage in creative local mission projects, service opportunities, educational programs, worship services, and media events.

Part of the mission is educational, Klemme, an avid recycler, said.

“As fanatical as I am, I still learn from other people doing things,” she said.

Klemme noted that she has learned from the actions of Bruce Templer, who also is on the Mission 4/1 Earth committee and has participated in Operation Clean Stream for 27 years.

Activities Planned

Other than the volunteer hours, tree planting and letter writing, there also will be other activities planned.

There was a “camp Sunday” April 14 that featured a youth-led service and speaker Jeremy Force, the director of Camp Mo-Val. That same day there was a street cleanup in downtown Union.

There will be two trees planted at local schools, and the UCC congregation will be given a total of 70 trees to plant at their homes or other locations.

Church members took part in the Franklin County scrap tire collection April 12-13.

There also will be representatives from Zion UCC who attend a Missouri conference of the UCC.

Church members also are asked to take personal actions, including recycling, donating to groups like Habitat for Humanity and being “Earth friendly.”

The church is located at 115 S. Washington Ave, Union. For more information, people may contact the church at 636-583-2814.