At Rev. Joel Hunter’s Northland Church near Orlando last Thursday, faith leaders called for urgent attention to creation care, climate change, and protection of the poor. Hunter called the meeting to rally the evangelical community in Central Florida, and wound up with a crowd from more than a dozen states and the District of Columbia. He took the opportunity to apologize to environmentalists for the tardiness of the evangelical movement to take up the creation care mantle.
Others noted the recent advances in evangelical engagement on issues like global warming. Richard Cizik, of the National Association of Evangelicals, one of the keynote speakers, was quoted in the Orlando Sentinel as saying "Evangelicals have become the go-to religious community on climate change….The political center of gravity has unmistakably shifted on this issue."
The day-long Creation Care Conference featured other keynote speakers Cal DeWitt of the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, Tri Robinson of the Boise Vineyard, and Catholic Bishop Thomas Wenski of the Diocese of Orlando. An interfaith dialogue between Muslim, Jewish, and Christian leaders established connections in how each of the faith traditions addressed creation care.
I was there, doing a workshop on Connecting Families to Creation Care (based largely on our family's experience in inner-city Atlanta and on Richard Louv's book Last Child in the Woods). We also launched the Deepgreen website and t-shirts and hats (sure-fire ways to build a movement).