Image courtesy of seminaryhillfarm.org
The Seminary Hill Farm is a ministry on the campus of the Methodist Theological School in Ohio (MTSO). Made of fields, hoop houses, and a greenhouse, the farm works to provide fresh food throughout the year to the Seminary Hill Kitchen, a three-season community supported agriculture (CSA), and local farmers markets. The work of the seminary hill farm supports sustainable practices and MTSO’s commitment to faithful earth stewardship. You can also follow their blog that features articles on eating fresh local produce and life at the farm.
To learn more about the Seminary Hill Farm click here.
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The InterReligious Task Force on Central America (IRTF) was founded in Cleveland in the 1980s after four US women were killed in El Salvador. They gather across religious denominations and traditions to work for peace and justice in Central America. They expose the negative realities of globalization including the ecological destruction that has occurred in Central America. They advocate for human rights and in sponsoring fair trade they also support environmental stewardship.
In May 2019, they held two Food Action Forums, one on alternative food systems and another on alternative trade organizations.
To learn more about IRTF click here.
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A group of anti-fracking activists were meeting in northeast Ohio. Faith leaders at that meeting thought it would be beneficial to approach the issue of fracking from the perspective of faith. They have grown to now include members from 45 faith communities primarily in Ohio but West Virginia is also represented. They welcome anyone to join their organization regardless of background or faith. They work to provide education and advocacy materials on energy conservation and renewable energy for faith communities in Ohio. They also hold regular statewide meetings. Their website includes a blog that is regularly updated.
To be connected with FaCT click here.
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The Baltimore Food and Faith Project works to unite faith communities around issues of food systems in the Maryland area. They work to improve the food crisis at a systematic level, but Jason Jordan-Griffin was personally affected by the work of Baltimore Food and Faith Project. He joined a program called “Food and Faith” when he felt that he was not treating his body as the temple God had given him. The program includes lessons from a nutritionist and faith based perspectives on eating well, not only for one’s self but for one’s community and the world. Jordan-Griffin found that this deeply affected his connection with the faith-based moral and ethical implications of eating. The article linked below tells his story and the benefits of uniting mindful eating with faith practices.
Click here to access the article or to learn more about the benefits of the Baltimore Food and Faith Project.
From 2008-2010, The Center for Closing the Health Gap in Greater Cincinnati partnered with several neighborhood churches and partners in the Avondale area, outside of Cincinnati to improve access to affordable foods. This led to an eventual partnership with the Food Trust to create lasting change.
To learn more about the project or to access the full program report click here.
Training cohort from 2018. Image courtesy of mtso.edu
In May 2019 The Methodist Theological School in Ohio held a conference on sustainable food practices to fight poverty, hunger, and climate change. This conference was intended to support the education of faith leaders on current environmental issues led by Al Gore, Heber Brown III, and Aster Bekele.
To learn more about On Food and Faith click here.
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Started in 2010, The University Church (TUC) garden fights food insecurity in Toledo, Ohio by donating produce to local pantries and families. They hold events to educate on gardening practices, and they partner with Reynold’s elementary school and hold events to teach students about gardening and healthy eating. They also sponsor a Community Supported Agriculture group that runs from June to September.
To learn more about TUC Garden click here.
Image courtesy of arocha.org.
A Rocha is a Christian organization that supports conservation efforts. Originally established in Portugal, this group now has a presence in twenty countries. One of the resources that they offer is a guide for establishing a church garden, including information on how to deal with weeds and an appendix of forms outlining permission for land use or volunteer registration that communities may find helpful.
To access the PDF click here.
To learn more about A Rocha click here.
Image courtesy of cool harvest.org
When faith communities begin their own gardening journey, it is helpful to refer to stories from communities who have done it before. Cool Harvest, an interfaith food and climate organization created by Interfaith Power and Light, gathered the best entries from the Cool Congregations Challenge for “Sacred Grounds Steward” submissions.
To connect to these success stories click here.
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Since the 1970s, a group of churches in Dayton, Ohio have been inspired by the words of Jeremiah to 29:7, “Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” They established Jeremiah’s Letter to support their community. They fight the injustice of poverty and hunger in their community through sustainable practices, including an emergency Food Pantry.
To connect to their website click here.