Hope in the Age of the Climate Crisis: Finding Our Moral Compass

PA IPL’s 2015 Annual ConferenceUntitled design
October 25 1:30 PM-5:00 PM

Annual meeting follows until 6:00.
Door prizes!
Check-in, fellowship, and green resources fair begin at 1:00
The Lutheran Theological Seminary at Phildadephia, 7301 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19119

Co-sponosored by the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.  Additional support from all of our program book sponsors, and a generous grant from the Rock Ethics Institute.

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This conference will bring together clergy and lay leaders of all faiths and none for a dynamic afternoon of nationally-recognized and behind-the-scenes movers and shakers.

Come to the conference!  You’ll leave inspired, energized, and newly connected with other Pennsylvanians who are reaching out in faith to act on climate change.  You’ll add new skills and ideas to your toolbox for adapting for your own work and contexts — we hope in collaboration with PA IPL.  We’re totally excited.  Don’t miss it.  Gather a van-full of registrants from your area and let us know as soon as you can — we’ll apply for transportation funding for your group.

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Help us make the conference excellent: download a flier , register, and spread the word, starting right now!

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1:00     green and greening resources fair and check-in
1:30  keynote panel and discussion 
beginning with Spirited song with the wonderful Rev. Rhetta Morgan of the Ecclesia Spiritual Center
3:30   workshops
5:00   the Annual Meeting is open to everyone and will include

  • 2015 Visionary Award presented to Rabbi Arthur Waskow
  • annual report/year in review
  • board elections
  • 2016 preview
  • door prizes!

6:00    adjourn

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green-arthur-199x300Dr. Arthur Green was the founding dean and is currently rector of the Rabbinical School and Irving Brudnick Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Religion at Hebrew College. He is Professor Emeritus at Brandeis University, where he occupied the distinguished Philip W. Lown Professorship of Jewish Thought. He is both a historian of Jewish religion and a theologian; his work seeks to form a bridge between these two distinct fields of endeavor.

Educated at Brandeis University and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where he received rabbinic ordination, Dr. Green studied with such important teachers as Alexander Altmann, Nahum N. Glatzer, and Abraham Joshua Heschel, of blessed memory. He has taught Jewish mysticism, Hasidism, and theology to several generations of students at the University of Pennsylvania, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (where he served as both Dean and President), Brandeis, and now at Hebrew College. He has taught and lectured widely throughout the Jewish community of North America as well as in Israel, where he visits frequently. He was the founder of Havurat Shalom in Somerville, Massachusetts in 1968 and remains a leading independent figure in the Jewish Renewal movement. Dr. Green is author of over a dozen books.

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DSC_0082Keya Chatterjee is Executive Director of USCAN, and author of the book The Zero Footprint Baby: How to Save the Planet While Raising a Healthy Baby. Her work focuses on building a movement in support of climate action. Keya recently appeared in the documentary ‘Disruption,’ promoting the People’s Climate March. Keya’s commentary on climate change policy and sustainability issues has been quoted in dozens of media outlets including USA Today, the New York Times, Fox News, the Associated Press, The Washington Post, and NBC Nightly News.

Prior to joining USCAN, Keya served as Senior Director for Renewable Energy and Footprint Outreach at the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), where she worked for eight years. Before that, Keya was a Climate Change Specialist at USAID. Keya also worked at NASA headquarters for four years, communicating research results on climate change. Keya was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Morocco from 1998 to 2000. She currently serves on the board of the Washington Area Bicycling Association. Keya received her Master’s degree in Environmental Science, and her Bachelor’s in Environmental Science and Spanish from the University of Virginia.

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thumb_maryelizabethclark_1024Mary Elizabeth Clark, SSJ, Director of the Sisters of Saint Joseph Earth Center is Special Assistant to the President for Sustainability of Chestnut Hill College. She is also an Ambassador for the Catholic Climate Covenant building on the work and statements of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.



KarynWiseman.cropModerator Rev. Dr. Karyn L. Wiseman is the Associate Professor of Homiletics and Director of United Methodist Studies at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia. She is an Elder in The United Methodist Church and has fifteen years of experience pastoring churches in Kansas and New Jersey. Her degree is in Liturgical Studies, with major study in both Preaching and Emerging Trends in the Church. She studied with Dr. Leonard Sweet and received her PhD from Drew University in 2006.

Dr. Wiseman is especially interested in engaging the 21st century church for vital ministry, equipping established communities to take on new models and methods for church, and employing postmodern ideas to reengage younger generations in preaching and worship. Social media is a big part of her work. Her most recent book, I Refuse to Preach a Boring Sermon: Engaging 21st Century Listeners, was published in 2013 by Pilgrim Press. She has written numerous commentaries for Working Preacher, ONScripture, Feasting on the Word, Feasting on the Gospels, and others.

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Dr. Arthur Green, Rev. Dr. Karyn L. Wiseman, and Keya Chatterjee will be joined by:

Screen Shot 2015-09-07 at 3.34.08 PMPaula Kline, EdD, is a Quaker educator and a peace and environmental activist. She is passionate about the fossil fuel divestment movement and organizing schools and communities to begin the transition to renewable energy. In addition to climate work in the U.S., Paula coordinates a cloud forest restoration project in Mexico.

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dwayne-1Bishop Dwayne D. Royster is POWER’s (Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild) Executive Director and the founding Pastor of Living Water UCC located in Oxford Circle in Northeast Philadelphia.  He has served in Pastoral ministry for the past 23 years, including in the United Methodist, Mennonite, and Baptist Churches as well as the United Church of Christ. He is the Assistant Presiding Bishop of Higher Ground Christian Fellowship International.  Bishop Royster also has extensive organizing, social advocacy and political experience, including serving on City Council in Norristown in Montgomery County. The Bishop is graduate of Geneva College’s Center for Urban Theological Studies and the Lutheran Theological Seminary In Philadelphia. He was born and raised in Philadelphia.

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photo! AW maroon
Rabbi Arthur Waskow, Ph.D.
, founded (1983) and directs The Shalom Center. In 2014 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award as Human Rights Hero from T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights. In 2015 the Forward named him one of the “most inspiring” Rabbis in the US. Among his 22 books are Down-to-Earth Judaism, Godwrestling — Round 2, and Torah of the Earth.  He also wrote the pioneering essay “Jewish Environmental Ethics: Adam and Adamah,” in the Oxford Handbook of Jewish Ethics. His most recent arrest of about 22 was in an interfaith climate action at the White House before Passover & Palm Sunday, 2013. He is a member of the Steering Committee of Interfaith Moral Action on Climate (IMAC). In the spring of 2015 he initiated the Rabbinic Letter on the Climate Crisis, now signed by more than 400 rabbis from every stream of Jewish life.

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image1424Rabbi Mordechai Liebling  is the founder and director of the Social Justice Organizing Program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College of which he is a graduate.  He is the President Emeritus of the Shalom Center and serves on the boards of T’ruah: A Rabbinic Call for Human Rights and of the Faith and Politics Institute.  He was the founding chairperson of Shomrei Adamah: Guardians of the Earth.  He is a member of the Jewish Social Justice Roundtable and of the Green Hevra, a coalition of Jewish environmental organizations.  He has published numerous articles.  He is married to Lynne Iser; their family was the subject of the award winning documentary Praying With Lior.

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IPL Climate Advocacy: Sharing a Moral Voice
Paula Kline
We know spiritual and moral messages are critical in preventing a climate and humanitarian catastrophe, and yet we sometimes struggle with how best to share our deepest commitments. Due to our state’s legacy and current role in fossil fuel production, our trusted voices are essential. In this workshop we will share our new advocacy strategies and role play face-to-face meetings with elected officials and policy makers. Join us to strengthen our public witness across the state.

Speak my Language: Racial Justice and Environmental Justice
Bishop Dwayne Royster
This workshop will explore the need for intersection between the racial justice movement and environmental justice movement in America.  Ideas will be presented that should help activists and leaders on both sides to hear and affirm the other as a bridge to collaboration and intersection.

Prayer as if the Earth Really Matters
Rabbi Arthur Waskow and Rev. Dr. Karyn Wiseman
An interfaith conversation about liturgy, prayer, and crafting worship experiences that honor the earth. We will also talk about how we might honor the work necessary for communities of faith to engage climate change issues in meaningful ways.

Living a Zero Footprint Lifestyle
Keya Chatterjee
In this workshop we will discuss what lifestyle changes are most important to make, what the barriers are to change, and why individual action is relevant for policy makers.

A Jewish Creation Theology for the 21st Century
Dr.  Arthur Green
A study session with 
teacher and theologian Rabbi Dr. Arthur Green, author of over a dozen books, including Radical Judaism: Re-thinking God and Tradition.

Green Justice Philly
Mordechai Liebling with additional Green Justice leadership.
Green Justice Philly is
a coalition of diverse community, neighborhood, environmental, public health, faith , labor and civic organizations (including Philadelphia- IPL), and local businesses working to promote a clean, sustainable and just energy future with good jobs for the Philadelphia region. We are embarking on a campaign to have city council pass an ordinance that no new permits will be issued to consistent violators, this will prevent the growth of the dirty energy hub in Philadelphia; we are also working on developing renewable energy options in Philadelphia. Come learn about our work.

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Help us spread the word!  You can download a flier, register, and spread the word, starting right now!

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THANK YOU to our program book sponsors: