April 22, 2020, marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. The annual celebration of the wonders and miracles of nature also draws attention to important environmental issues and causes such as climate change, energy conservation and sustainability efforts.
Church and Society has partnered with Creation Justice Ministries − an ecumenical environmental justice movement − to provide congregational resources for churches to use in worship or other settings to celebrate Earth Day. The theme for this year is "The Fierce Urgency of Now.” The same resources can be used to celebrate the Festival of God’s Creation, set for April 19 on the official United Methodist calendar. Each year, the Festival is set on the Sunday nearest Earth Day.
The United Methodist Church acknowledges the importance of environmental protection as a part of Christians’ call to be good stewards of God's creation while ensuring sustainability for future generations. Climate justice is also vital to social and racial reconciliation as too often the poor and minority communities are affected by pollution and environmental disasters disproportionately.