Reflections on Stewardship of the Land Gathering

IMG_0738 This past weekend I attended Stewardship of the Land: A Christian Community Gathering.  Having felt bogged down by steady news of degradation of God’s earth over the past months I was in need of inspiration, reflection, and hope.  The event provided these for me: in the form of mist rising off beautiful mountains, talking with others who care deeply for the earth, and in the energetic faces of the eight Eco-Stewards.

The Eco-Stewards are young adults who are passionate about earth care and participated in a week-long program sponsored by Presbyterians for Earth Care and Presbyterian Church Camp and Conference Association.  As we learned about the amazing experience that the Eco-Stewards had shared over the past week: learning about environmental justice, eco-theology, and community movements throughout West Virginia, I was inspired by their passion, by their hope, and their sense of energy.  I look forward to seeing the great things that this group of young people will do.  Four of the Eco-Stewards will serve in internships throughout West Virginia this summer and will be regular contributors to the Eco-Stewards blog.  Learn more about the program and read their reflections on eco-justice on the blog.

IMG_0735 The Stewardship of the Land event was held at Bluestone Camp and Retreat, which is nestled in the beautiful mountains of West Virginia.  As I sat at morning worship and saw the mist rising over the lake, I was reminded of the importance of Sabbath.  Sabbath keeping fills many purposes, including taking time to worship God intentionally and refreshing our spirits.  Further, Sabbath keeping provides a model for us to use in care for the earth.  Remembering to refresh our spirits can help us work to refresh and revitalize the earth as well.

I went away from the conference with many new ideas for action to care for the earth.  However, the greatest reminder came with the need for Sabbath keeping: for the good of the earth and for the good of my spirit.

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