“If you don’t preach about climate change every 3-4 weeks,” I read in one of my preaching journals, “the time will come soon when you’ll have to preach about grief every week.” Wow. Overly dramatic? I don’t know, but it sure got my attention.
Many environmentalists say we’re already past the tipping point where we’re entering uncharted territory with our atmosphere and the effects it will have on climate change. Others find that too alarmist and say there are things we still can do to reverse some of the changes. The thing beyond dispute is that we as people of faith must absolutely consider our care and stewardship of the planet as a spiritual discipline to which we are called. And the vows that we as a community make to the children who are baptized in our midst must include the vow to live in such a way that they and their children might grow up in a world full of beauty and wonder, able to support and sustain life that is diverse and sufficient for the health and dignity of all its creatures.
As you can read elsewhere in this issue, there is a group of folks in our church family who feel passionate about our need to respond to the growing evidence of climate change. They have proposed that during Lent – the traditional season of taking on practices that will help us in our spiritual journey — we focus on those practices that will also develop our spiritual disciplines of earth care. From small, individual practices to the more demanding life changes, needing the support of a community, we will explore how we might more faithfully “tend the garden” to which God has entrusted us.
Lent begins this year on Ash Wednesday, March 5, with Easter almost as late as it can get — April 20. 1 Invite you to give some thought ahead of time as to how you will observe this holy season, what passion or heartbreak or hope you will allow to inspire and guide your journey and what disciplines or practices will aid you along the way.
Know that you do not journey alone!
Grace and peace,