Life, Faith and Urban Farming

The life and happenings of an unconventional pastor and urban farmer living in the city with a family of five.

Monday, May 01, 2017

Acting on Climate

While many of our nation's climate activists were marching in Washington DC on Saturday some of us remained at home and marched in our respective cities. I had the opportunity to march and to speak at the Pittsburgh march. Here's what I said:


Today, humanity sits at a great precipice. One that we may blindly fall into with little chance of return, or that we may creatively build a bridge over. Climate change, with little or no intervention, will create the worst humanitarian and environmental disasters we’ve ever seen. But scientists and entrepreneurs have the solutions that we need to transition away from fossil fuels and toward clean, renewable energy. The bridge that we need is being built, but, will we continue off the ledge and into the chasm?

As a pastor, I believe addressing climate change and environmental issues is a moral imperative. Climate change is not a political issue for me, it is not a partisan issue for me, climate change is an issue of ethics, morality and an issue of faithfulness for those who believe caring for people and caring for the earth are mandates from the Creator.

In November of last year I traveled with some friends to North Dakota to learn what I could from the Dakota Sioux Indians and participate in the resistance at Standing Rock. I learned a great deal about leadership and how to follow. I learned that the transition away from fossil fuels will not be lead by our government or by those who have power in this nation. Rather, the transition will be led prayerfully by those who have been oppressed, by indigenous people, and by regular people like you and me, but rarely by those with influence and power. But, we have the ability to influence those with power. Through our choices, the ways we spend our money, our own personal transitions away from fossil fuels, the letters we write and the banks we choose, we will collectively influence those who believe they hold great power in our country.

I make a very modest living as a pastor and urban farmer. Last year, my family put solar panels on our home. A friend of mine, just this past year, decided to buy an electric vehicle, and put solar on his home. His family of four now uses no gasoline and almost no electricity that doesn’t come from their own panels. We all need to share how we are individually making this transition, and encourage each other to enter into this exciting journey. Another example of regular folks making big changes has come through the thousand of letters we have and continue to send to our banks. Banks like PNC bank, a great company, that unfortunately is still funding the Energy Transfer Partners, the parent company of Dakota Access.

As people who live by love, compassion, ethics and morals, we must stand up and demand change. We must be the change that we are demanding. We must demand and demonstrate the change that must come about in this world.

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