Image courtesy of Amazon.com
In this work, Sallie McFague unites her love of hagiography, the study of the saints, and the urgent need to address overconsumption in the economy and the environment. McFague suggests a close study of lives of the saints. Here specifically, she considers Simone Weil, John Woolman, and Dorothy Day, in the hope that contemporary believers may find a path from belief to faith-inspired action. A kenotic lifestyle, one of self-emptying, the author sees reflected in the lives of the saints considered here. She sees the unified path to kenosis inspired by the “wild space” of voluntary poverty, the awakening of the saint through this poverty to material needs of others, the increase in view of the self to include a universal self, and finally the connection of the kenotic lifestyle to the personal and public spheres of life.
Speaking specifically to middleclass readers, McFague condemns the complacent comfort in which we live that destroys God’s creation, human and nature alike. She calls for a radical understanding of the divine incarnation and expansion of the self to include the universal. An unsettling of traditional theology in favor of recognition that kenotic love is that which fuels the universe is the good news that can oppose the crisis in the economy and environment. McFague brilliantly weaves the example of the saints with our own call to action which must, like the saints discussed, be personal and public.
To learn more about Sallie McFague click here. This along with McFague’s other works can be found on Amazon or through your favorite independent bookstore.
Podcasts are a wonderful resource to connect with experts and learn more about many topics. For faith leaders and laity alike “ecofaith on air” is a wonderful resource to learn more about perspectives in ecotheology. Started in April 2015, they have provided many conversations, panels, and interviews that can be accessed on podcast platforms. The podcast concluded in January 2019, but you can access old episodes that span such topics as World Environment Day and the Cosmic Christ. Episodes range in length from under ten minutes to about an hour.
To access the ecofaith on air backlog click here. The still active facebook group can be accessed here.
Image courtesy of http://beeckencenter.sewanee.edu
In September 2019, the Beecken Center and the Center for Religion and the Environment are offering a conference that approaches the connections of faith and ecology to trees and forests. Presenters include Matthew Sleeth, MD, Karen Kuers, PhD, Connie Keetle, and Robert Gottfried, PhD. This conference plans to investigate how trees natural interactions with the ecosystem around them and scripture’s engagement of trees may teach us how to live.
To learn more about the conference or to register, click here.
Image courtesy of journeyoftheuniverse.org
Journey of the Universe is a multi-form approach that tells the story of the universe. It emphasizes the interconnected nature of the world, and it calls upon the human community to tend to the world on which we rely. An interdisciplinary approach that engages science, narrative, and humanist wisdom. The material is available in a book, documentary, and online course. Beyond these initial forms, the Journey of the Universe has expanded into a YouTube channel and podcast. The documentary is available on Amazon prime and the book is available on amazon or through your favorite independent bookshop. This set is a wonderful resource that may be used in many ways including in movie features or book groups.
To access the Journey of the Universe website click here.
For an individual interested in ecological justice and ministry, it may be important to attend a seminary or divinity school that is committed to care of creation. Partnering schools are listed below.
- Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary
- Boston University School of Theology
- Christian Theological Seminary
- Claremont School of Theology
- Columbia Theological Seminary
- Drew Theological School
- Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary
- Methodist Theological School in Ohio
- Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary
- The Samuel DeWitt Proctor School of Theology
- Trinity Lutheran Seminary
- Universidad Biblica Latinamericana
- Union Presbyterian Seminary, Charlotte.
Many other schools have filed reports with the Green Seminary Initiative. To access a list of those schools and to learn more about the partnering schools, click here.
Image courtesy of letallcreationpraise.org
Let All Creation Praise is a website maintained by Nick Utphall a pastor in Madison, WI; Susan Zencka, a pastor in Stevens Point, WI; Alydia Smith, programing coordinator for the United Church of Canada; Leah Schade, a professor of preaching and worship at Lexington Theological Seminary (KY), and David Rhoads, director of Lutherans restoring Creation. The website has many resources for worship, and they are an advocate for supporting the Season of Creation which is an opportunity to add this season of four Sundays celebrating creation and the creator to the traditional church year.
You can connect to their website here or connect via facebook here.
In 2014, Huffington post noted the trend of faith groups to make their voices heard in conversations about how to encourage and improve care for the environment. The author of the article, Antonia Blumberg collected fourteen interfaith organizations that are active across America in environmental efforts.
To access the article click here.
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In an opinion article for the Columbus Dispatch, Suzette Martinez Sandring offered a faith-inspired reflection on Earth Day 2019 that considers the necessity of change in our attitude and action toward the rest of creation.
To read Martinez Sandring’s article click here.
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The Christian Church sees their mission to move toward wholeness for the whole world as directly connected to their commitment to creation care. Their resource page offers links to connect with Green Chalice, a partnering ministry that is the official creation care ministry for The Christian Church. Links to further reading, resources for mindful eating, and the Alverna Covenant (a creation care covenant) can also be found on the page.
To be connected with this resource click here.
Image courtesy of Mediaplanet.com
This organization publishes content that addresses many current global and local. This includes a number of articles on issues like hunger, deforestation, and more. It can be difficult to know where to start when one decides to make more earth conscious decisions, but this website offers perspectives on global issues and more personal approaches to creation care, like in their article “Why It’s Smart to Invest in Sustainable Water Heaters and HVAC Systems.” The articles available in this resource are very helpful to introduce issues currently plaguing our planet.
Click here to access the Media Planet article “Conquering Hunger: Sustainable Solutions.”
To access the Media Planet home page click here.