Last December 11th at 11 a.m., Mary Beth Downing of Boulder, Colorado, stood outside her state capitol and rang a bell. She did it to express her concern about climate change.
“And people looked at me strangely,” she says, “but it felt like, OK, it feels like a right thing, a good thing.”
So she sent an email to members of her Methodist church community.
“I said, ‘Here’s a crazy idea: anybody want to join me on the 11th day of every month at eleven o’clock to raise an awareness, raise an alarm?’”
It was the start of a monthly interfaith event called the 11th Hour Calling. Participants ring the large bell at a local church. Across the street, members of a Buddhist center respond by striking their gong.
“We ring the bells and strike the gongs in response back and forth for 11 minutes,” says Downing, “and we hand out flyers. We have protest signs, you know, just trying to draw attention to this is what we’re doing, this is why we’re doing it.”
She says it’s an opportunity for people to come together, confront their fears about global warming, and renew their commitment to action.
Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media.