Several local religious communities and organizations such as Virginia Interfaith Power and Light and VA Sierra Club have come together to launch a weekly prayer vigil at the Virginia State Capitol throughout March to call for Virginia climate leadership and action.
“We are already seeing the impacts of climate disruption here in Virginia, from flooding down in Hampton Roads to Richmond being one of the Top Asthma Capitols in the country. As people of faith, we have a moral responsibility to speak up and encourage our leaders to act on climate” said Kendyl Crawford, Board Chair of Virginia Interfaith Power and Light.
The faith community applauds the climate leadership already displayed by Governor McAuliffe on the Clean Power Plan and encourages him to keep standing up for clean energy. During the vigils, faith leaders will pray for Governor McAuliffe as well as other leaders in Virginia to make decisions that will decrease carbon pollution and adapt the state to expected climate impacts. They will stress the importance of not expanding fossil fuel infrastructure through the construction of pipelines or by beginning drilling for fossil fuels off Virginia’s coast.
Barbara Adams, Steering Committee Member of Quaker Earth Care Witness and Member of Richmond Friends, said “The time is now to bring awareness to the ecological and social crises of the world from a spiritual perspective. Prayer vigils are one way the faith community can reflect on the climate crisis and the scriptural roots of why we need to take action.”
To strengthen the spiritual dimension of this important struggle, a series of one-hour prayer vigils are being jointly hosted by the Richmond Interfaith Climate Justice Team of Virginia Interfaith Power & Light and Virginia Sierra Club each Wednesday in March.
The vigils, occurring in the weeks leading up to the statewide Virginia Day of Action for Climate Change on April 2, are scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. at the Bell Tower on Capitol Square on March 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30. Each of them will reflect the wide range of faiths and spirituality which thrive in our city.