Posted by: Titus Presler | February 1, 2020

‘Earthkeeping: Creation Care in Global Mission’ is theme of 2020 Global Mission Conference, April 29-May 1

How can mission-minded Christians engage with the crisis of climate change and environmental degradation with mission companions in other parts of the world?

That is the question at the heart of the 2020 Global Mission Conference sponsored for the Episcopal Church by the Global Episcopal Mission Network (GEMN)“Earthkeeping: Creation Care in Global Mission” will be held Wednesday-Friday, April 29-May 1, at Christ Church Cathedral in Indianapolis, Indiana.  Register for the conference here.

Truly planetary, the climate crisis is so massive in its scope and impacts on humanity and all life that it is easy to feel helpless.  Every day brings news of crippling droughts, destructive fires, engulfing floods, impending starvation, and scientific predictions that global catastrophe is ever nearer.  Pollution of air, soil, rivers and oceans intensifies the crisis.

Yet as Christians we know that the cosmos is precious to the God who both created it and entered it in incarnate in Christ Jesus.  Participating in God’s mission therefore means that we must engage spiritually, theologically and practically in creation stewardship in the current emergency.  Personally, yes, but also in mission companionship with others around the world, many of whom live in places that are more severely affected by droughts, floods and rising sea levels.

So we in GEMN, of which I’m the current president, invite Episcopalians and Christians generally to explore at the Earthkeeping conference how to integrate creation care into our global mission work.  In addition to multiple workshops on specific examples and approaches, we will be spurred by keynote speakers:

  • Katharine Jefferts Schori, the former Presiding Bishop who was previously an oceanographer, will provide theological grounding, scientific background and insights from her experience around the world.

 

  • Leon Sampson, an eco-activist priest in Navajoland, will share how Native American perspectives correlate with Christian theology and offer ecological approaches from the First Nations.

 

  • Rachel Mash, a priest who coordinates the Green Anglicans network in Southern Africa, will discuss innovative approaches taken by the church in Africa and suggest specific ways Christians in the West can engage ecologically with companions in the Majority World.

 

  • Orlando Gomez, the bishop of Costa Rica, and a team from that diocese will share how the climate crisis is affecting Latin America and how his eco-activist diocese and others in that part of the world are engaging in creation care.

The science, politics and economics of the planetary crisis are discussed in multiple forums every day.  Neglected often are the spiritual and theological aspects and their implications for Christian discipleship and Christian mission.  The 2020 Global Mission Conference is an opportunity to explore how to bring the major worldwide crisis of our time to the center of our engagement in God’s global mission.

The conference at Christ Church Cathedral will begin at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, April 29, and continue through lunch on Friday, May 1.  Suggested travel days are April 28 and May 1.  Accommodation at a special conference rate is available next door (literally!) to the Cathedral at the Columbia Club.  Register for the conference here.  For questions about the conference you can contact me via comments on this blogpost.

 

 

 

 


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