April update

Welcome to the April update of the Stories and the Earth project!

This has been a busy month, as Earth Day is right around the corner (April 22) and all sorts of churches and other organizations have been hard at work producing resources and creating celebrations.

Since last I wrote an update, I’ve enjoyed learning with people in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, as well as participating in the Minnesota statewide EcoFaith Summit. During the Summit, I resonated deeply with a quote that the keynote speaker (Larry Rasmussen) offered from Terry Tempest Williams: “Before we can save this world we are losing, we must first learn how to savor what remains.” I think my whole project is focused on doing precisely that — savoring what remains, particularly through sharing our experiences with Creation.

There are more stories posted at the project website and I’ve heard from several people who are close to finishing theirs — soon that page will hold even more!

My next two events will be mini-retreats in Aberdeen, South Dakota and in Missoula, Montana. I’m so deeply moved by the vulnerability and intimacy of the stories people want to share, and the creativity they draw on as they work with them.

Some resources you might find useful (for Earth Day and beyond):

(1) an entirely free interreligious study guide for Earth Day produced by Seattle University’s Center for Ecumenical and Interreligious Engagement

(2) the same Center also produced a 20 minute prayerful meditation for Earth Day, which you can access at Vimeo and download for local use

(3) an accessible study guide on climate change created by the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, which means it is both biblically deep and generously hospitable

(4) I found the Ecofaith Summit, which was a Minnesota event, powerful. You can watch one long video of the entire event. Eventually the video will be broken apart so that you can watch just parts of it. Whether you watch it now or later, don’t miss 12 year old Gigi — at about the 1 hour mark — whose eloquence and compelling response to the keynote speaker (Larry Rasmussen) was a highlight of the day.

I hope you are remembering to cherish whatever Creation is around you, within you, in front of and behind you!