Congregation Receives FAITH award for wildlife-friendly habitat

 Trinity Presbyterian Church of Charlotte Receives F.A.I.T.H. Certification

North Carolina Wildlife Federation Bestows Habitat Honor 


Trinity Presbyterian Church of Charlotte has received the “Fellowship Actions Impacting the Habitat,” or FAITH, certification from the North Carolina Wildlife Federation. The FAITH program is a non-denominational initiative designed to recognize and certify places of worship that meet certain requirements for a wildlife-friendly habitat.


Trinity Presbyterian Church provides four components necessary for wildlife survival – food, water, shelter and places for wildlife to raise young. “This program is designed to encourage ongoing stewardship of our wildlife and wild places in urban, suburban, and rural settings,” stated Tim Gestwicki, Executive Director. “Direct hands-on projects are the key to fostering awareness and appreciation of our native flora and fauna.”


Throughout the 21 acres at Trinity Presbyterian Church there are plenty of natural food sources for wildlife but bird feeders and bird baths have been placed around the children’s classrooms for easy viewing of the local birds. Also viewed on the property are rabbits, chipmunks, raccoon, deer, hawks, owls, butterflies, and more than 20 species of songbirds.


Rev. Dr. William G. Cockrill is pleased with the new FAITH designation “Trinity Presbyterian Church of Charlotte is blessed with many assets, not the least of which is a beautiful and spacious campus. In a vibrant, fast-paced city, the Trinity campus offers an increasingly needed sanctuary from the hustle and bustle, not only for people but for a great variety of wildlife. Indeed, an oft-used symbol of Trinity is the picture of a pair of red tail hawks that regularly perch on the steeple.” Trinity is the first Presbyterian church in Charlotte designated as a FAITH site.


Members have been landscaping for the wildlife throughout the property and erecting nesting boxes for captivity nester such as Bluebirds, Downy Woodpeckers, House Wrens, and Carolina Chickadees – all placed for easy viewing by the members of the church but specifically in view of the Trinity Weekday School. “It is so important to connect our children with the wonders of nature and all of God’s creation. The Trinity Presbyterian FAITH program will give our children the opportunity to explore God’s wonders in nature with new children each school year. This project will help us to get children excited about being outdoors and learning how we can all be good stewards of the land,” said Mary Snyder, a teacher at the school.


Ernie McLaney, Trinity Elder and FAITH program coordinator worked for this certification because it will help remind church members to be stewards of this earth. “Environmental stewardship is an important topic that should be embraced by all places of worship. A healthy, vibrant ecosystem is the very thing that we depend on to provide us with our basic needs. Far too many of us have forgotten this and have removed ourselves and our children from the wonders of nature.”


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