On Water and Faith: Ministry in the Time of Climate Change

May 31, 2018 - June 2, 2018 UTC+0

On Water and Faith: Ministry in the Time of Climate Change May 31 – June 2, 2018 Union Theological Seminary – New York To train, support, and empower faith leaders, the Center for Earth Ethics is once again partnering with the Climate Reality Project to train 30-50 faith leaders from around the country to better address the ecological crisis in their own communities. Ministry in the Time of Climate Change requires an open-hearted approach that embodies the diversity of our country and plurality of ideas we’ll need to mitigate the worst effects of the ecological crisis.             

On Faith And Water: Ministry in the time of Climate Change
May 31- June 2, 2018 Union Theological Seminary 
Thursday May 31, 2018 9:00 AM 
Registration and Check-In 9:45 AM  Hastings/121st Street entrance 9:45 AM      

Opening Ceremony 10:15 AM   
Location: Quad or James Chapel Organizer: CEE Team 10:30 AM

Plenary: Where We Are, Where We Need to Go 11:45 AM
From increased storm severity to crippling droughts, it is clear the climate is changing, affecting water systems that all life depends on. In the midst of this change, fossil fuel interests continue to draw and poison groundwater while fracking, putting more heat-trapping pollution in the air. There are also efforts to privatize and commoditize water, even selling it back to the very drought-ridden communities from where it is pumped. What insights and practical solutions do faith communities have to offer to address this? These are the questions that will frame the whole conference.

  • Moderator: Karenna Gore – Center for Earth Ethics
  • Tiokasin Ghosthorse – First Voices Indigenous Radio
  • Kartik Chandran – Columbia University
  • Mariama White-Hammond – Bethel AME Church Boston

 12:00 PM   Lunch – Social Hall 1:45 PM 

Optional River Walk 1:30 PM   

On Faith and Water: Learning from Our Traditions 4:00 PM 
During this session we will split into four groups and rotate between four different speakers on topics designed to deepen our understanding of faith and water. Each session will last 25 minutes.

Stewart Room Water in Jewish Texts and Teachings [Rabbi Burt Visotzky, Jewish Theological Seminary]
Room 205 Water in Christian Liturgy and Rituals [Rev. Thia Reggio, Astoria First Presbyterian Church]
Room205a Water in Indigenous Perspectives, Rituals, and Traditions [Dr. Mindahi Bastida, Center for Earth Ethics, Tiokasin Ghosthorse, First Voices Indigenous Radio]
Room 207 Water in Islamic Texts and Teachings [Colin Christopher, Islamic Society of North America]

Water, Environmental Justice, and Climate Change
5:30 PM        Location: Room 207
In the wake of devastating storms and in the midst of extreme heat waves, low income and marginalized communities are routinely left without access to water.  Many communities also struggle with health problems resulting from inadequate water and sanitation systems, all of which is exacerbated by climate change. This panel will take a clear look at these issues and explore solutions.

  • Moderator: Dr. Geraldine Patrick – Center for Earth Ethics
  • Bishop Carroll Baltimore – International Community Baptist Churches
  • Wes Gillingham – Catskill Mountainkeeper
  • Raina Thiele – Thiele Strategies

Dinner 6:30 PM        Social Hall 

Public Lecture 8:30 PM        Speakers:

  • Vice President Al Gore – Climate Reality Project
  • Catherine Flowers – Center for Earth Ethics/ACRE/EJI

Friday, June 1, 2018

Breakfast (optional) Social Hall 9:00 AM     
Morning Meditation 9:45 AM       Location: James Chapel Leader: Rev. Ken Kitatani, Forum 21
Climate and Water Presentation 12:15 PM      Location: 207 

Lunch   12:30 pm  Social Hall 

Workshops Session 1 – Faith in Praxis 3:15 PM       
Location: Stewart Room, 205, 205a, 207
Training to help faith communities respond to the ecological crisis. Two sessions of 45 minutes each to allow participants to attend at least two sessions.

Stewart Room Integrating Climate into Your Sermons [Facilitated by Rev. Ana Levy-Lyons, First Unitarian Congregational Society in Brooklyn]
Room 205 Water in the New Testament [Facilitated by Dr, Aliou Niang, Union Theological Seminary
Room 205a Watershed Discipleship [Facilitated by Dr. Tim VanMeter, Middle
Room 207 Advocacy and Nonviolence: Confronting Climate Change [Rev. Mariama White-Hammond- Bethel AME Church]

Workshops Session 2 –Engaging Beyond Our Faith Communities 3:30-5:30 PM   
Locations: Stewart Room, 205, 205a, 207
Training to help reach out to communities being impacted by the ecological crisis. Two sessions of 45 minutes each to allow participants to attend at least two sessions

Stewart Room Reaching Out to Those in Need [Facilitated by Catherine Flowers, Center for Earth Ethics]
Room 205 Disaster Relief [Facilitated by Alyssa Young and Marcus Coleman, FEMA]
Room 205a Crafting Climate Stories [Facilitated by Jill Leaness, The Climate Reality Project]
Room 207 Laudato Si and Civic Engagement – Lessons from the Papal Encyclical [Facilitated by Fr. John Rausch and Sr. Robbie Pentecost]

Casual Dinner  5:30 PM Social Hall  

Saturday, June 2, 2018  Breakfast (optional) 8:00 AM  – 9:00 AM   Social Hall 
Morning Meditation 9:00 AM 9:45 AM   James Chapel Leader: Josephine Mandamin, Ojibwe Elder

Planning for the Future We Need: Brainstorming Session 10:00 AM  – 11:30 AM 
Location: James Chapel
At the end of the training we want to reflect on what we learned and plan for what we can do. We will break into groups to strategize and share ideas that will help transform our communities. The Climate Reality Project will facilitate the session. 

Closing Ceremony 11:45 AM   – 1:00 PM        Social Hall or Quad  

Questions:     Please contact: Genie Cooper.



May 31, 2018
June 2, 2018
Event Category: