Wednesday, January 6, 2016

1/16 Creation Corner Col.: Moving the Needle on Environmental Matters


 If you could move the needle on one environmental issue, what would it be?  Consider the following short list of study guides and books, most written from a religious perspective for a reader of faith.  Among them you may find some to inspire you.

                                                 STUDY GUIDES

The Papal Encyclical Letter from Pope Francis, Laudato Si', On Care for Our Common Home, includes a study guide in the published paperback version from The Word Among Us Press (, that is not provided anywhere else.  "Addressed not only to Catholics but to 'every person living on this planet,' Pope Francis' second encyclical is a challenging call for a 'bold cultural revolution' in how we think about technological progress and economic growth.  The degradation of our environment, he says, is a symptom of deeper problems: rapid change, unsustainable overconsumption, indifference to the poor, and the decay of social values.  He offers a variety of solutions, including a change in lifestyles away from 'extreme consumerism' and toward a greater sense of social responsibility.  For Christians, an 'ecological spirituality'--- one that is grounded in the convictions of our faith--- is not 'an optional or a secondary aspect of our Christian experience.'

A second study guide, for Creation-Crisis Preaching: Ecology, Theology and the Pulpit, by Leah Schade, a Lutheran pastor in northcentral PA, is free and available from the web site of Chalice, where a discounted version of the book is available in such digital formats as EPUB and EPDF.
                              A SAMPLE LIST OF BOOKS FOR THE READER

75 Masterpieces Every Christian Should Know: The Fascinating Stories Behind Great Works of Art, Literature, Music and Film.  Terry Glaspey.

About Earth's Child: An Ecological Listening to the Gospel of Luke.  Michael Trainor.

Backpacking With the Saints: Wilderness Hiking as Spiritual Practice.  Belden C. Lane.

Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi.  Richard Rohr.

The Ecological Thought.  Timothy Morton.

Ecology Without Nature: Rethinking Environmental Aesthetics.  Timothy Morton.

For the Love of All Creatures: The Story of Grace in Genesis.  William Greenway.

From Nature to Creation: A Christian Vision for Understanding and Loving Our World.  Norman Wirzba.

Gardening Eden: How Creation Care Will Change Your Faith, Your Life, and Our World.  Michael Abbate. (includes 15 pages of resources)

Grounded: Finding God in the World/A Spiritual Revolution.  Diana Butler Bass.

Hope Against Darkness: The Transforming Vision of Saint Francis in an Age of Anxiety.  Richard Rohr.

Inherit the Holy Mountain: Religion and the Rise of American Environmentalism.  Mark Stoll.

Islam Statement on the Environment: see

Methodism in the American Forest.  Russell E. Richey.

A New Climate for Theology: God, The World, and Global Warming.  Sallie McFague.

Our Only World: Ten Essays, by Wendell Berry.

Sallie McFague: Collected Readings.  Sallie McFague and David B Lott, editors.