Sponsored by Yale Divinity School and The Forum on Religion and Ecology
Humanity confronts potentially the greatest challenges ever faced in growing environmental threats such as climate change, toxic pollution, and biodiversity loss. As religious leaders, we are called to respond to the suffering of the earth community through seeking environmental justice, creating sustainable lifestyles, and caring for all creatures.
This three-part pilot program combines theory and practice with hands-on activities to equip participants with some of the skills needed to foster a sense of creation care among religious leaders and the tools to grow this sense of co-dependence and mutual respect for the earth in our communities. This program will run for a trial period of three years and be available to both Yale affiliates and community members.
Ministry for the Earth Community Requirements
The MEC program begins with a seminar giving theological background for living into a culture of sustainability. Participants will also be introduced to Journey of the Universe, a project that integrates modern science and spirituality. Informed by this project, participants will explore the environmental context of the Christian tradition.
Practical Skills for Creation Care
The second seminar provides technical skills for helping congregations become more sustainable and nurturing. This includes an assessment of energy use, resources for creating environmental lecture series, and references for preparing sustainable events with a congregation.
The third component of the MEC is a hands-on project. Each participant will complete field work to ground the academic training in applied practice. This component may include working at the Divinity School Farm, planning events with the YDS Sustainability Team, leading a worship service, or engaging in a form of environmental activism. Participants should begin forming ideas for their service project following the opening session.
Participants will provide a short written analysis of their service project with knowledge gained in the two seminars and present this information in a final group meeting. This analysis should broadly reflect on the MEC program and draw specific insights from each of the seminars.