“We believe that caring for creation must undergird, and be entwined with, all other dimensions of our churches’ ministries. We are convinced that it is no longer acceptable to claim to be ‘church’ while continuing to perpetuate, or even permit, the abuse of Earth as God’s creation.”
— God’s Earth is Sacred: an open letter to church and society, National Council of Churches, 2005
Last week, Kit led us into the world of the national Episcopal Church’s Jesus Movement, which has three pillars, outlined on their web page – see table.
The third pillar, Creation Care, calls us to encounter and honor the face of God in creation. Below that, there are 4 bullets
- Develop creation care resources
- Grow local eco-ministries
- Pursue eco-justice at church-wide and local levels
- Convene conversations around climate and faith
I think just in bringing this up last week, we began a conversation around climate (or at least the environment) and faith. Now we delve further.
I hesitate to create resources when they may already have been created, so I began looking. No surprise, there are a lot out there already. Our assignment next week will be to look up some of these national and state level resources to learn the field and see what part of this we’d like to take on.
But here’s a succinct definition of eco-justice – “the well-being of all humankind on a thriving Earth”
And here’s a short video to further explain environmental justice in terms of race and socio-economic status.
Finally, a passage from Eco-Justice Ethics, by Dieter T. Hessell:
Norms of Eco-Justice Ethics
The basic norms of eco-justice ethics can be summarized as follows:
- solidarity with other people and creatures – companions, victims, and allies – in earth community, reflecting deep respect for diverse creation;
- ecological sustainability – environmentally fitting habits of living and working that enable life to flourish, and utilize ecologically and socially appropriate technology;
- sufficiency as a standard of organized sharing, which requires basic floors and definite ceilings for equitable or “fair” consumption;
- socially just participation in decisions about how to obtain sustenance and to manage community life for the good in common and the good of the commons.
So here are our questions to ponder this week based on these norms.
What does solidarity with other people and creatures look like? How would we know we’re there?
What are indicators that life is flourishing in our communities?
What do you think about sufficiency as a standard to help us understand ‘fair’ consumption?
Lots to chew on here. Can’t wait to see you tomorrow!