Statements of World Religions on Climate Change

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2006 UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST: Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change

3/10/08 Southern Baptist Declaration on the Environment and Climate Change

12/1/08 Bahai International Community: Seizing the Opportunity: Redefining the challenge of climate change

April 2009 Presbyterian Church USA – U.S. Energy Policy and Global Warming

June 2009 A Quaker response to the crisis of climate change

11/30/09 Dalai Lama Urges World to Act on Climate Change

September 2011 United Methodist Church Statement on Climate Change

2/29/12 Judaism and Climate Change: The Yale Forum on Climate Change and the Media

4/19/12 Environment & Ecology in Islam

6/30/13 United Church Of Christ To Become First U.S. Denomination To Move Toward Divestment From Fossil Fuel Companies

5/30/14 Catholic – U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Statement on Climate Change

6/10/14 UNION THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY IN THE CITY OF NEW YORK VOTES UNANIMOUSLY TO DIVEST FROM FOSSIL FUELS

6/28/14 THE UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST ASSOCIATION JOINS FOSSIL FUEL DIVESTMENT MOVEMENT

7/11/14 World Council of Churches rules out fossil fuel investments

9/18/14 First Sikh Statement on Climate Change

9/19/14 Anglican Church of Canada, The Episcopal Church, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada: A Pastoral Message on Climate Change

9/23/14 Interfaith Climate Change Statement

3/30/15 17 Anglican Bishops from all six continents have called for urgent prayer and action on the “unprecedented climate crisis

5/14/15 A Buddhist Declaration on Climate Change: The Time to Act is Now

6/15/15 Pope Francis’ ENCYCLICAL LETTER LAUDATO SI’ ON CARE FOR OUR COMMON HOME

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Learn about President Obama’s Actions to combat Climate Change

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American Indian Religious Freedom Act of 1978

American Indian Religious Freedom Act

The American Indian Religious Freedom Act, Public Law No. 95-341, 92 Stat. 469 (Aug. 11, 1978) (commonly abbreviated to AIRFA), codified at 42 U.S.C. § 1996, is a United States federal law, enacted by joint resolution of the Congress in 1978. It was enacted to protect and preserve the traditional religious rights and cultural practices of American IndiansEskimosAleuts, and Native Hawaiians. These rights include, but are not limited to, access of sacred sites, freedom to worship through ceremonial and traditional rights and use and possession of objects considered sacred.

The Act required policies of all governmental agencies to eliminate interference with the free exercise of Native American religion, based on the First Amendment, and to accommodate access to and use of religious sites to the extent that the use is practicable and is not inconsistent with an agency’s essential functions. It also acknowledges the prior violation of that right.

Passage

Due to the complex nature of American Indian religious beliefs, American Indian religions have often been at odds with existing federal laws and government policies. There have been three general areas of conflict. Firstly, American Indians did not have access to a number of sacred places that were used in religious ceremonies. Native American religious practices often came into conflict with the idea that American public lands exist for the use and benefit of the American people. The results of the passage of the Indian Removal Act and the General Allotment Act were the displacement of hundreds of tribes, including the Five Civilized Tribes of the southeastern United States, and the forced assimilation of Native American families into agricultural settler societies.

The second conflict was the possession of ceremonial items that are restricted by United States Law, such as eagle feathers or bones (a protected species) or peyote. The conflict lies in the fact that items such as peyote are integral parts of ceremonies practiced by members of churches such as the Native American Church. The use of eagle bones in ceremony has been brought up in any case involving Indian claims on hunting and fishing rights allowed for tribal member to hunt for eagles.

The third general area of conflict was an issue of interference. Sacred ceremonies were sometimes subject to interference from overzealous officials or curious onlookers.

The act itself was more a policy statement, and it acknowledged prior infringement on the right of freedom of religion for American Indians by denying them their First Amendment right of “free exercise” of religion. President Jimmy Carter said, in a statement about the AIRFA, a very similar thing:

In the past, Government agencies and departments have on occasion denied Native Americans access to particular sites and interfered with religious practices and customs where such use conflicted with Federal regulations. In many instances, the Federal officials responsible for the enforcement of these regulations were unaware of the nature of traditional native religious practices and, consequently, of the degree to which their agencies interfered with such practices.

This legislation seeks to remedy this situation.

For more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Indian_Religious_Freedom_Act

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Obama Proclaims Río Grande del Norte a National Monument, Significant Site for Natives

3/26/13 indiancountrytodaymedianetwork

Yesterday, March 25, by proclamation, President Obama established Río Grande del Norte as a National Monument. The announcement of a national monument designation has come in response to considerable input from the community including local businesses, sportsmen, elected officials, Latino organizations, Native American tribes and nearly the entire New Mexico congressional delegation.

The Río Grande del Norte National Monument will boost economic growth in northern New Mexico while permanently protecting the heritage,  water and approximately 240,000 acres of natural areas and wildlife habitat in the region.

Hispano leaders and organizations, small business owners and the Taos and Mora Valley Chambers of Commerce, sportsmen and ranchers, Native American Pueblos and elected officials, and conservation organizations have come together to thank President Obama for protecting Rio Grande del Norte National Monument.

“I applaud President Obama protecting Rio Grande del Norte National Monument because many of the wildlife species that live in that corridor come in and out of this area.  Left unprotected, there may be very few animals available that the Native American people of Taos Pueblo depend on for food, clothing and shelter,” says Benito Sandoval, Taos Pueblo War Chief.

For more: http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2013/03/26/obama-proclaims-rio-grande-del-norte-national-monument-significant-site-natives-148361

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Securing Indigenous Rights to Sacred Places With the UN Declaration

5/16/12 Karla E. General – indiancountrytodaymedianetwork

The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples presents a new opportunity and a new kind of legal authority that could help Native peoples to secure rights to sacred places, and to preserve and protect cultural, religious, and spiritual practices.

The Declaration recognizes and affirms the rights of indigenous peoples to their cultural, religious, and spiritual practices, to have private access to sacred sites (Arts. 12(1), 11(1)), as well as to maintain and strengthen their spiritual relationship with their traditionally held lands, territories, waters and coastal seas and other resources (Art. 25). With the Declaration, Native peoples have rights acknowledged by the international community of nations, including rights to sacred places both within existing reservation or territorial boundaries and beyond.

As rights-holders, Native nations and individuals have the right to cultural, religious, and spiritual practices. As duty-bearer, the U.S. has the responsibility to prevent infringement of these rights.

For more:  http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2012/05/16/securing-indigenous-rights-sacred-places-un-declaration
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List of Native American Tribe Websites A-Z

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US Govt & Indigenous Peoples Timeline 1819-2014 (ProPresObama.org Civil Rights Timelines ™)

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Merry Christmas 2013

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WH Christmas Card

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Remarks of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama

Weekly Address
The White House
December 25, 2013

THE PRESIDENTHello everybody, and happy holidays.

THE FIRST LADY: We know how busy this time of year is for everyone, so we’re not going to take much of your time.

But we did want to take a moment to wish you all a Merry Christmas, from our family to yours.

THE PRESIDENT:  This is a season for millions of Americans to be together with family, to continue long-held holiday traditions, and to show our gratitude to those we love.  And along the way, some of us might even watch a little basketball or eat some Christmas cookies, too.

THE FIRST LADY: Here at the White House, over the past few weeks, we’ve had about 70,000 people from all across the country come visit us and look at our holiday decorations.

This year’s theme was “Gather Around: Stories of the Season.”

And in every room of the house, we tried to tell a story about who we are as Americans and how we celebrate the holidays together.

And we made certain to highlight some of the most powerful stories we know – the stories of our outstanding troops, veterans, and military families and their service and sacrifice for our country.

THE PRESIDENT:  Our extraordinary men and women in uniform are serving so that the rest of us can enjoy the blessings we cherish during the holidays.  But that means many of our troops are far from home and far from family.  They’re spending some extra time on the phone with their loved ones back home. Or they’re setting up video chats so they can watch as the presents are opened.  So today, we want all of our troops to know that you’re in our thoughts and prayers this holiday season.

And here’s the good news: For many of our troops and newest veterans, this might be the first time in years that they’ve been with their families on Christmas.  In fact, with the Iraq war over and the transition in Afghanistan, fewer of our men and women in uniform are deployed in harm’s way than at any time in the last decade.

THE FIRST LADY: And that’s something we all can be thankful for.

And with more and more of our troops back here at home, now it’s our turn to serve – it’s our turn to step up and show our gratitude for the military families who have given us so much.

And that’s why Jill Biden and I started our Joining Forces initiative – to rally all Americans to support our military families in ways large and small.

And again and again, we have been overwhelmed by the response we’ve gotten as folks from across the country have found new ways to give back to these families through their schools, businesses, and houses of worship.

THE PRESIDENT:  That’s the same spirit of giving that connects all of us during the holidays.  So many people all across the country are helping out at soup kitchens, buying gifts for children in need, or organizing food or clothing drives for their neighbors.  For families like ours, that service is a chance to celebrate the birth of Christ and live out what He taught us – to love our neighbors as we would ourselves; to feed the hungry and look after the sick; to be our brother’s keeper and our sister’s keeper.  And for all of us as Americans, regardless of our faith, those are values that can drive us to be better parents and friends, better neighbors and better citizens.

THE FIRST LADY: So as we look to the New Year, let’s pledge ourselves to living out those values by reaching out and lifting up those in our communities who could use a hand up.

THE PRESIDENT:  So Merry Christmas, everyone.  And from the two of us, as well as Malia, Sasha, Grandma, Bo…

THE FIRST LADY: And Sunny, the newest Obama.

THE PRESIDENT:  We wish you all a blessed and safe holiday season.

THE FIRST LADY: Happy holidays everybody, and God bless.

http://youtu.be/b3Dz2yCLQ-c

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Norad Santa Tracker

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NORAD uses radar, satellites, Santa cams, and fighter jets to track Santa Claus.
Track Santa’s location: http://www.noradsanta.org

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Sorry but ProPresObama thread comments &
WH daily schedule not available 12/1/13 – 1/5/14
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Ch. Capt. E.J. Kapaun, Medal of Honor Recipient

Medal of Honor

Emil J. Kapaun

Chaplain Emil J. Kapaun, while assigned to Headquarters Company, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism, patriotism, and selfless service between Nov. 1-2, 1950. During the Battle of Unsan, Kapaun was serving with the 3rd Battalion of the 8th Cavalry Regiment. As Chinese Communist forces encircled the battalion, Kapaun moved fearlessly from foxhole to foxhole under direct enemy fire in order to provide comfort and reassurance to the outnumbered Soldiers. He repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire to recover wounded men, dragging them to safety. When he couldn’t drag them, he dug shallow trenches to shield them from enemy fire. As Chinese forces closed in, Kapaun rejected several chances to escape, instead volunteering to stay behind and care for the wounded. He was taken as a prisoner of war by Chinese forces on Nov. 2, 1950.

After he was captured, Kapaun and other prisoners were marched for several days northward toward prisoner-of-war camps. During the march Kapaun led by example in caring for injured Soldiers, refusing to take a break from carrying the stretchers of the wounded while encouraging others to do their part.

For more: http://www.army.mil/medalofhonor/kapaun

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April 11, 2013
President Barack Obama awards Chaplain (Captain) Emil J. Kapaun
the Medal of Honor posthumously for conspicuous gallantry
White House

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Happy Holidays & Thank You to Our Troops

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December 22, 2012

Weekly Address: The President and First Lady Extend a Holiday Greeting and Thank our Troops for their Service

WASHINGTON, DC—In this week’s address, President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama wished everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, and thanked our brave troops and their families for their service.  The President and First Lady asked the American people to visit JoiningForces.gov to find ways to honor and support our veterans and military families, and said that we must all come together, as we always do, to care for eachother during this holiday season.

Remarks of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
December 22, 2012

THE PRESIDENT:  Hi everybody.  This weekend, as you gather with family and friends, Michelle and I want to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holidays.

THE FIRST LADY:  We both love this time of year.  And there’s nothing quite like celebrating the holidays at the White House.  It’s an incredible experience and one that we try to share with as many folks as possible.

This month, more than 90,000 people have come through the White House to see the holiday decorations.  And our theme for this year’s holiday season was “Joy to All” – a reminder to appreciate the many joys of the holidays: the joy of giving…the joy of service…and, of course, the joy of homecomings. 

THE PRESIDENT:  That’s right.  This weekend, parents are picking up their kids from college – and making room for all that laundry they bring with them.  Children are counting down the hours until the grandparents arrive.  And uncles, aunts and cousins are all making their way to join the family and share in the holiday spirit.

THE FIRST LADY:  That’s what makes this season so special – getting to spend time with the people we love most.

THE PRESIDENT:  And this year, that’s especially true for some of our military families.  You see, the war in Iraq is over.  The transition in Afghanistan is underway.  After a decade of war, our heroes are coming home.  And all across America, military families are reuniting.

So this week let’s give thanks for our veterans and their families.  And let’s say a prayer for all our troops – especially those in Afghanistan – who are spending this holiday overseas, risking their lives to defend the freedoms we hold dear.

THE FIRST LADY:  And remember, when our men and women in uniform answer the call to serve, their families serve right along with them.  Across this country, military spouses have been raising their families all alone during those long deployments.  And let’s not forget about our military kids, moving from base to base – and school to school – every few years, and stepping up to help out at home when mom or dad is away.

Our military families sacrifice so much on our behalf, and Barack and I believe that we should serve them as well as they serve this country.  That’s why Dr. Jill Biden and I started Joining Forces – an effort to rally all Americans to honor and support our veterans and military families.  Just go to joiningforces.gov to find out how you can show your gratitude for their service.

THE PRESIDENT:  Because that’s what this season is all about.  For my family and millions of Americans, it’s a time to celebrate the birth of Christ. To reflect on His life and learn from His example.  Every year, we commit to love one another.  To give of ourselves.  To be our brother’s keeper.  To be our sister’s keeper.  But those ideas are not just part of our faith.  They’re part of all faiths.  And they unite us as Americans.

THE FIRST LADY:  In this country, we take care of each other.  And in this season of giving, it’s inspiring to see so many people all across America taking the time to help those most in need.

THE PRESIDENT:  That’s part of what makes us such a compassionate nation.  And this year, I know many of you are extending that kindness to the families who are still picking up the pieces from Hurricane Sandy and your prayers to the people of Newtown, Connecticut.

THE FIRST LADY:  So thank you for all that you’ve done this year on behalf of your fellow Americans.

THE PRESIDENTAnd on behalf of my favorite Americans – Michelle, Malia, Sasha and Bo – Merry Christmas, everybody.

THE FIRST LADY:  Happy holidays.

Thank the Troops

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Moment of Silence for Newtown

Candle light

Our hearts are broken today. We grieve for the families of those we lost. And we keep in our prayers the parents of those who survived.”

12/15/12 President Obama

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December 21, 2012 9:30 AM ET

Please join President Obama and the nation in observing a moment of silence in honor of the victims of the Newtown, Connecticut shooting.

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Please join me in lighting a candle for our Nation

http://www.gratefulness.org/candles/candles.cfm?l=eng&gi=PBO

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Resources for Parents and Schools After Connecticut Tragedy

December 17, 2012 05:07 PM EST Megan Slack – whitehouse.gov

Following Friday’s shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, the Department of Education has provided a number of resources to help parents in the wake of traumatic events, as well as a host of resources to help schools prepare for and recover from crisis.

Below is a list of resources specifically designed for parents and guardians to provide guidance on talking to children after a traumatic event:

* Tips for Adults on How to Talk with Children About Connecticut School Shooting [PDF]

*Helping Young Children and Families Cope with Trauma [PDF]

      * Spanish –

Ayudando a Niños(as) y Familias a Enfrentarse con el Trauma

    [PDF]

* Childhood Traumatic Grief Educational Materials for Parents[PDF]

*Tips for talking to children and youth after traumatic events: A guide for parents and educators [PDF]

*Parent Tips for Helping Infants and Toddlers after Disasters[ PDF]

*Parent Tips for Helping Preschool-Age Children after Disasters [PDF]

*Parent Tips for Helping School-Age Children after Disasters [PDF]

*Parent Tips for Helping Adolescents after Disasters [PDF]

Click here for more information and to see documents in additional languages.

In message to schools around the country, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan shared some resources from the U.S. Department of Education’s Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools Technical Assistance Center.

*Helping Youth and Children Recover from Traumatic Events

*Creating and Updating School Emergency Management Plans

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Religious Tolerance

US Bill of Rights Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Source: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/bill_of_rights_transcript.html

Freedom of Religion  - symbols

“I will do everything that I can as long as I am President of the United States to remind the American people that we are one nation under God, and we may call that God different names but we remain one nation. And as somebody who relies heavily on my Christian faith in my job, I understand the passions that religious faith can raise. But I’m also respectful that people of different faiths can practice their religion, even if they don’t subscribe to the exact same notions that I do, and that they are still good people, and they are my neighbors and they are my friends, and they are fighting alongside us in our battles.”

September 10, 2010 President Obama

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8/10/12  10:00 AM ET Sikh Temple of Wisconsin wake and memorial service

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Support Wisconsin Shooting Victims  Attend a Support Event

8/6/12 – 8/26/12 http://www.kaurista.com/events/

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“I was in Aurora to meet those who lost loved ones during that terrible shooting. And I just had a chance to see some of the first responders who helped to save lives and comfort families during that terrible, terrible day.  Unfortunately, since that time, we’ve had another tragedy in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, where six members of our community were killed as they entered into a house of worship.

And so I think we can all acknowledge, we’ve got to put an end to this kind of senseless violence  — whether it’s in Aurora, whether it’s in Oak Creek, whether it’s in Tucson, whether it’s in cities all across America where too many lives are cut short because of senseless violence. This is going to have to stop. And as an American family — as one American family — we’re going to have to come together and look at all the approaches that we can take to try to bring an end to it.

And I want you to all know that the thoughts and prayers of the entire nation remain with those in Aurora. And even though the perpetrators of these acts have received a lot of attention, attention on them will fade and what will be replaced are the stories of heroism and hope that we’ve seen here in Colorado, and in Wisconsin, and across the nation. That’s what we’ll remember. That’s what’s going to matter.  That’s what we will value — the strength and the resilience and the care and the love of the American people.”

August 08, 2012 President Obama

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August 08, 2012

Readout of the President’s Call with the Prime Minister of India
President Obama spoke with Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh this morning to express condolences for victims of the senseless attack at the gurdwara in Wisconsin, which took the lives of Indian nationals as well as Americans, and to convey the solidarity of the American people. President Obama reiterated that the Sikh community is an essential and vibrant part of the American family. The President also underscored that the incident is particularly tragic because it took place in a house of worship. Prime Minister Singh expressed his gratitude for the many messages and gestures of support from the United States, and for the prompt reaction and heroism of the local police department. The two leaders re-affirmed their nations’ commitment to the shared values of pluralism, religious freedom, and freedom of worship.

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Presidential Proclamation–Honoring the Victims of the Tragedy in Oak Creek, Wisconsin