Climate Change & The Church


Global warming is one of the biggest threats facing humanity today. The very existence of life – life that religious people are called to protect – is jeopardized by our continued dependency on fossil fuels for energy. Every major religion has the mandate to care for Creation. We were given natural resources to sustain us, but we were also given the responsibility to act as good stewards and preserve life for future generations.

There are two faith organizations, Green the Church and Interfaith Power & Light, who are moving the dial in promoting and encouraging the faith leaders, through their church buildings, to become climate game changers in the fight against global warming.

“The mission of Interfaith Power & Light is to be faithful stewards of Creation by responding to global warming through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.” In the religious community, many times the first thought when it comes to congregants and members is fellowship, sometimes advocacy and more often family. However, there is a tremendous opportunity when a faith leaders have the attention of hundreds of people on a weekly basis and sometimes more than once a week given weekday services. The information that trusted faith leader can share with licensing years is extremely monumental.

For 20 years Interfaith Power & Light (IPB) has been helping congregations address global warming by being better stewards of energy and their data shows that they have educated hundreds of thousands of people in the pews about the important role of people of faith in addressing this most challenging issue, and the carbon footprint in these congregations have reduced tremendously. IPL’s mission also includes being advocates for vulnerable people and communities that are the most heavily impacted by climate change. From air pollution to droughts to rising seas, it is poor people who are being hit first and worst by global warming. IPL’s goal is to ensure that climate policies provide adaptation and mitigation support for communities domestically and internationally whose health and survival is at stake.

“Green The Church (GTC) is an initiative designed to tap into the power and purpose of the African American church community, and to explore and expand the role of churches as centers for environmental and economic resilience.” – GTC is an organization that started here in the Bay Area over five years ago, but its impact and reach has spread to various cities and states including Baltimore, MD, Detroit, MI and several other cities. In full circle, the summit returns to the Bay Area, October 7 – 9, 2018 at Glad Tidings COG, 970 Glad Tidings Way, Hayward, CA, Bishop J.W. Macklin, Pastor. The goal of the summit is to empower, educate and enlighten the faith community, faith leaders, climate change advocates and policymakers around the importance of their aggressive participation and needed voice against global warming. GTC engages congregations in the fight against climate change and helps churches serve as centers of resilience that ensure their communities survive – and thrive – in the face of disasters.

There is rarely a community conversation among faith leaders and the faith community on the subject of climate change and global warming. However, when we consider that there are hundreds of elected officials, civic leaders, corporate executives, venture capitalists, tech influencers and other highly respected individuals who attend church regularly, this is a tremendous opportunity to have their ear regularly and engage them more fully in this very critical conversation.

Some of the keynote speakers during the 5th Annual Green The Summit, October 7th – 9th, 2018 at Glad Tidings COGIC are Rev. Dr. Frederick D. Haynes, III, Rev. Dr. John R. Adolph, Pastor Welton Pleasant, Rev. Michael McBride, Chef Mimi, and many others. Some of the panel topics are: Social & Environmental Justice, Charging The Next Generation, African American Food Sovereignty, Theology of Light, The Future of Energy and more. Register at for this summit. Attendees will learn to work together to create an equitable green economy and ensure a sustainable planet.

And go!

THE MoAD Afropolitan BALL RAISES $1M to keep black culture in san francisco


When the Hiplet Ballerinas of Chicago, IL get the party started at a gala, you know you're in for an absolute treat.  The MoAD Afropolitan 2017 Gala took place on October 28, 2017 at the Fairmont Hotel, San Francisco and it was outstanding as expected.  Hundreds attended and more than $1M was raised towards MoAD's goal of keeping Black Art & Culture in the City of San Francisco.  It's no secret that the African American population in San Francisco has decreased tremendously over the last 20 years, so while the people, in many cases, have been forced to make an exodus from the city, keeping the black history and culture that made the city what it is today, is extremely important.


It was very refreshing to see so many young professionals attending the MoAD Afropolitan Gala this year.  MoAD's commitment to advancing the message of the need to elevate the voice of black art in San Francisco is critical to this movement - a movement as I call it.  MoAD understands the value of embracing young professionals and millennials in the conversation as they will soon be, or they already are, those 'next in line' to bring the message full circle, not just in San Francisco, but nationally.  MoAD's Vanguard Leadership Council has the charge of outreach to young professionals throughout the Bay Area, many who don't know about the museum and others who have desired to find a place to share their artistic talent and other professional skills that the museum can use.

The honorees of the evening were Betye Saar – Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and Fred Blackwell – Visionary Leader in Philanthropy.  It would be great to see next year a young philanthropic professional honored as this would even further elevate the reach to a group of people who are open to being included and can bring money and talent to the table.

And go!

Y'Anad Burrell on Huff Post HERE

Steeped In History by Toyota | A Tour of San Francisco African American History

William Leidesdorff

On March 26, 2017, Toyota hosted a very unique and unforgettable driving tour of the rich African American history in San Francisco, CA.  More than 10 Toyota vehicles caravanned a group of approximately 20 people through the streets of San Francisco. I am a native San Franciscan and it was shocking to hear, for the first time, the impact and pathways that Black people played in what is now a very different San Francisco.  In a city that I have called home for many many years, my very own history was never taught in a public school system that I attended from kindergarten to high school.  I recall taking an African American Studies class in high school and this information was never a part of the syllabus.

Well, here it is. Toyota comes to save the day and it's a breath of fresh air to meet the tour historian Mr. John William Templeton.  Here is just a snippet of what I learned on that tour.  And go!

  • William Leidesdorff is only one of two people buried in San Francisco, California.  When Mr. Leidesdorff died in 1854, he was worth $1.4M.
  • Langston Hughes lived at 2335 Hyde Street, San Francisco
  • Mary Ellen Pleasant was the first African American female millionaire.  The oak tress she planted in front of her mansion which was located on the corner of Octavia & Bush Streets in San Francisco are still standing today.
  • Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church is 165 years old and the oldest African American church in San Francisco. Located at 916 Laguna Street.