photo by Sean MacEntee
Hundreds of Christians came together on Monday to learn how the global ecumenical family can better care for our common home this Season of Creation, a month of prayer and action to protect all of creation from 1 September to 4 October.
An international panel of experts guided the 90-minute discussion that was moderated by Rev. Dr. Chad Rimmer, Program Executive for the Lutheran World Federation, and by Rev. Dr. Dave Bookless, Director of Theology at A Rocha, a Christian nature conservation organization.
Rimmer began the discussion with a prayer that reminded all participants about the need to spend the month-long celebration repairing and restoring our relationships with each other and creation.
“These days our living pushes the planet beyond its limits. Our demands for growth and our never-ending cycle for production and consumption are exhausting the world . . . We’ve not allowed the land to earn her sabbath, and the Earth is struggling to be renewed,” Rimmer said.
The panel was comprised of international experts on theology and creation care:
- Father Joshtrom Kureethadam, the coordinator of the sector of ecology and creation at the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development;
- Ruth Padilla DeBorst of the Latin American Theological Fellowship;
- Martin Kopp, chairperson for the Commission on Ecology and Climate Justice of the French Protestant Federation;
- Ruth Valerio, Global Advocacy and Influencing Director for Tearfund, a Christian charity working to end global poverty;
- Rei Crizaldo of Micah Global, a Christian network of organizations and individuals.
Kureethadam said that Christians should use the Season of Creation to “acknowledge our sins, our sins to the land and creation, and our sins to our brothers and sisters.”
Padilla DeBorst talked about “Casa Adobe,” the intentional Christian community she and her husband belong to in Costa Rica, where they learn how to live so that “all forms of life can flourish.”
Kopp challenged webinar attendees with the idea of a “green Reformation” of Christianity, backed by 9.5 theses. Valerio nudged everyone to push our governments and businesses for a “green economic recovery” that is socially fair and environmentally sustainable.
Crizaldo called on all Christians to use this time to “slow down” and think about how our daily lives affect creation.