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|State Religious Groups Battle Environment
|Three religious groups in Illinois are undertaking efforts to go easy on the environment.
Resurrection Lutheran Church is the first church in Chicago to install a solar hot water system. The system will be used by the church to host soup kitchens, homeless shelters and after-school programs. The church secured a state rebate and a grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation to install the system.
The Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation of Evanston is the first house of worship in the nation to receive LEED platinum certification by the United States Green Building Council. The 32,000 square foot synagogue's green features include water conservation and recycled materials. The space will house the sanctuary, classrooms, meeting space and a child care center. The old synagogue was demolished, with 96 percent of the demolition material by weight recycled.
The Mosque Foundation of Bridgeview is the nation's first mosque to install solar panels on the roof to help heat the building's water instead of using natural gas. The project was completed in part with a state of Illinois rebate and a grant provided by the Illinois Energy Community Foundation.
The three were assisted by Faith in Place, an organization that help religious groups be good stewards of the earth.
"Long before we had the 10 Commandments, God said, 'Fill the earth and take care of it,'" said the Rev. Brian Hiortdahl, pastor of Resurrection Lutheran Church. "We filled it, and now it is a command to take better care of it and we're trying to do our little part, not only with solar panels but with a lot of the little things that everyone can do."
|11 27 09 by Newsroom
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