Loving God's Creation


Earth Action, Reflection, Theology and Hope
Dear Friends in Earth Care,

Blessings to you this September! Presbyterians for Earth Care has been focusing on issues of water. This month's edition of EARTH features a picture essay on The Shore – that place where we meet the water; a sermon on the Spirituality and Ethics of Water, a piece on climate change and drought, and some poetry.

I am honored to join the EARTH team and am excited about our possibilities. We are always looking for new and diverse voices to add to our monthly collection. Please do let us know if you want to join us. We would love to feature your reflections, poetry, and artwork!

In faith,
Sue Smith, EARTH Co-Editor

by Nancy Corson Carter

Nancy Corson Carter is a member of the EARTH team, and she lives in Chapel Hill, NC.
I found this rock
on the shore,
its pleasing roundness
created by
how many tides?
Like all humans, I’ve
come from roundness
formed in waters
of an inland sea:
my mother’s womb.
Around and around
the Earth spins
all things together:
our earth/air/fire/water
sacred sphere
blessed by God’s
surrounding love.

The Shore
by Eric Beene

Rev. Eric Beene is Pastor of White Bluff Presbyterian Church in Savannah, Georgia.  He is also a hobby photographer. Photos (c) 2016 by Eric Beene. All photos taken at Blackbeard Island National Wildlife Refuge, Georgia. To see more of his work, including photo prints and note cards available for purchase, see his blog at ericbeene.wordpress.com/photos.

The Spirituality and Ethics of Water
by J. Mark Davidson

J. Mark Davidson: Pastor, The Church of Reconciliation, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; This is his sermon for the annual Earth Sabbath at New Hope Camp and Conference Center, May 8, 2016.

Augustine’s 4th c. classic The City of God drew a contrast between the human city and the city of God. The human city was human civilization, what we human beings have made of the earth, how we have arranged our life, our glories and our failures. The city of God, on the other hand, was God’s original design for human life, a blueprint for sustainable human flourishing, so often not followed. The whole message of Christianity is the ongoing redemption of the broken human city until it comes under the sway of the city of God… much as Jesus prayed… “thy kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.” Two phrases from this morning’s scriptures – from Psalms and from John – help us understand: “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God;” that river is Jesus Christ and the streams are the true followers of Jesus spreading out into the world like thousands of tributaries of life and hope… as John put it: “Out of their hearts shall flow streams of living water.”  Read more...
detail of blue with grace (crayon) by abby mohaupt.

The Cyclical Nature of Weather
by Katie Preston

Katie Preston is a member of the EARTH team and lives in Boston, MA.
What a year it has been. As we’ve seen for the past 16 years, record after record is falling for the “hottest month” each and every month. When I moved to New England last December, I was hoping for a mild winter to help ease me into the change from Southern life. And I received my wish – compared to the previous winter, things were pretty mild here in Boston. But now that summer is here in full force, it’s apparent that mild winter means brutal summer.
When we were in middle school learning about weather, I remember coming back from a snow day, and our teacher said it was time to stop learning about weather because the week before it had be 80 and she didn’t want to experience any more weather phenomenon we were studying! What we learned back then was that weather patterns are cyclical.  But weather is reliant on the climate – yes, they are different! Weather is “the state of the atmosphere, to the degree that it is hot or cold, wet or dry, calm or stormy, clear or cloudy.” Climate, on the other hand, is the study of weather over time. Local weather is a result of the climate patterns over time. As the earth’s temperature rises over time, what we refer to as climate change, local weather patterns change in comparison to historical averages and seasons. We are seeing temperatures rise in higher latitudes, a longer season for hurricanes and monsoons, and detrimental drought as well.
As people of faith who believe in the call to care for creation, we can no longer ignore the impacts of climate change, or wait to take action. Climate change and the weather impacts are upon us in full force. The drought in California and the current wildfires remind us how fragile life is. All the while Baton Rouge is flooded and thousands of people are displaced because of a freak amount of rain in a short period of time. And these are the effects we are feeling here in the US – but people all over the globe have been experiencing these impacts for years, and do not have the resources to mitigate or respond to climate change the way we do. We are called to care for the least of these, and to help our brothers and sisters in need.
The Presbyterian Hunger Program released a great resource to consider climate change and water that highlights some important things to know, and things you can do to help. While the climate will not change overnight, we can do our part to be better prepared to respond to the drastic weather phenomenon occurring across the globe, and reaching out to help our neighbors in crisis.

Breathing Water
by Nancy Corson Carter

Breathing in
I inhale the O2
of phytoplankton’s
watery exhalation;
Breathing out
I exhale the CO2
of their inhalation.
Life is so beautifully
Wherever I am,
I can stop a moment
and rejoice in
our shared breath.
Note: Phytoplankton are photosynthesizing microscopic organisms that inhabit the upper sunlit layer of almost all oceans and bodies of fresh water. They are agents for "primary production," the creation of organic compounds from carbon dioxide dissolved in the water, a process that sustains the aquatic food web.
It is estimated that between 50% and 85% of the world's oxygen is produced via phytoplankton photosynthesis.
want to join the newsletter committee and help PEC reflect on God's creation?
email abby mohaupt to join us.
Donate Today
Copyright © 2016 Presbyterians for Earth Care, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp