Creation Care for Congregations

 

Presbytery of Baltimore CREATION CARE GROUP

 

 

BLIND SPOT - A Documentary film

This movie clearly illustrates the current energy crisis we face as a civilization and a culture.  It explains that we  have come to a crossroads as a society, each with dire consequences: if we continue to burn fossil fuels and go on with "business as usual", we risk decimating a good portion of life on the planet and if we don't, our way of life will dramatically change.

The movie features interviews with: William Catton Jr., Max Fraad Wolff, Richard Heinberg, Kenneth Deffeyes, Albert Bartlett, Roscoe Bartlett, James Hansen, David Pimentel, Joseph Tainter, David Korten, Jason Bradford, Elke Weber, Mary-Ann Hitt, Terry Tamminen, Ted Caplow and Derrick Jensen.

The movie is sobering and serves as an invitation for us all to start thinking about sustainability and shifting to a way of life that is not so consumptive. The movie was named, "Blind Spot", because our culture and media don't want us to see the direct consequences of our actions, namely the result of our high energy, resource consuming way of life.

It is an absolute "must see" for anyone who wants a clearer picture of what is really happening to our planet.

Reviewer: Dan Evans

Running Time: 86 mins.

View Trailer and/or purchase DVD  here

 

 

 

Nooma-RICH

 Is it possible that God has blessed us so that we can be a blessing to others?"  This is the provocative question explored in this short video, thereby opening up all kinds of issues, including justice, fairness, and sustainability of the world system.  It is so important for us in the United States to understand what a skewed perspective of the world that we have.  One of my favorite quotes from the video is, "It is dangerous when we think of `our'  world as `the' world."  Indeed it is.  I would simply add, "It is also dangerous when `the' world wants `our' world to be `their' world!

This little video is short enough to be a real conversation starter for an adult class or gathering, and is contemporary enough to work well with middle and high school groups.  I've even used it as part of an annual stewardship campaign, because it provides an important counterbalance to our skewed view of God's gifts to us.

Reviewer:  Bill Blair

Running Time: 12:43

View film here                                    Order free DVD here

 

 

 

 

THE STORY OF STUFF

This delightfully produced and illustrated short video makes an excellent introduction to a disussion of the materialistic culture in which live and the damage that it is wreaking on the natural world that God created.  The film is narrated by Annie Leonard.  Here is what its makers say about it:

 

"From its extraction through sale, use and disposal, all the stuff in our lives affects communities at home and abroad, yet most of this is hidden from view. The Story of Stuff is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It'll teach you something, it'll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the stuff in your life forever."

 Running Time: 20 mins

More Information and downloads  here

 

 

 

 

Mountain Mourning

 

 

 This excellent and moving film, produced by Christians for the Mountains in West Virginia, depicts vividly how mountaintop mining practices are harmful to the people of the mountains as well as the hills and forests and rivers of Appalachia.  It is narrated by local pepole and makes extensive use of gospel songs.  The makers of this film say this:

"Mountaintop removal mining is probably not what Isaiah had in mind in Chapter 40 (“Every valley shall be raised up; every mountain and hill made low”). Right now mining companies are blasting the tops out of Southern Appalachian mountain peaks and pushing the rubble into the adjacent valleys and streams, burying habitats, polluting creeks and wells, and endangering the lives of the people nearby."

An excellent reource to spur discussion of how our thoughtless exploitaion of the riches of the Earth, fostered by our demands for cheap energy, are destroying what God has created.

Running Time:  20 mins.

More information, downloads and to purchase DVD go here

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sisters on the Planetlead image 

This is a series of brief films, made by OXFAM, each lasting less than 10 minutes.  They come on a DVD or can be viewed separately on line.  There is also a helpful study guide that can be downloaded.  The "sisters" are four women in very different parts of the earth, form the marshes of Bangladesh to the savannahs of Kenya and the US Gulf coast.   Each of these women is confronting and responding with resliance to the effects of climate change in her own way .  This brilliantly produced series of vignettes illustates powerfully how climate change is not just an esoteric concern of environmentlists but a devastating reality for the wold's neediest and least advantaged people.

It is an excellent starter for a group dicussion.  The vignettes can be used separately or as a series, depending upon the time available

Running time:  7 mins. x 4

For more information, to view on line, or to order DVD, go here

 

 

"In the Beginning ...

..God created the heavens and the earth... and God saw that it was very good."

With these words, at the very beginning of our scriptures, the Hebrew story-tellers affirmed the beauty and holiness of the natural world.   We start from there.  [more]

Welcome to our Web

The purpose of this web site is to help individuals and congregations in their ministry of Caring for Creation.  We aim to provide encouragment, information, ideas and resources for use in the wide variety of circumstances that congregations and people encounter in their daily lives.

Resources to Help You

There are many web sites that can help you.  We also have a series of papers on Biblical and other topics related to earth ministry, suggestions of books that will help you develop deeper understanding of creation and creation care, and listings of speakers who are willing to make a presentation at your church and video resources for classes and forums.

Creation Care Ideas for Churches

There are many relatively simple things  a church can do to care for creation and help build a more sustainable future.  Many congregations in the Baltimore Presbytery have developed model programs and actions.