A panel discussion of BPMH faith leaders on how climate change is impacting their countries and how/if their governments, environmental groups and the Church is responding. What will these faith leaders teach/model about the climate crisis when they go home.

Johnny Kashung, North Eastern India: Manipur
Bright Singh David, Southern India: Kerola
Linna Gunnaway, Indonesia
La Hkawng, Myanmar
Alice Kabaganwa, Rwanda
Lucina Lopez Perez, Mexico
HeeWon Jin, Korea

FAITH PERSPECTIVES ON CLIMATE CHANGE: From a Roman Catholic/Christian Perspective, Tuesday, April 20, 4:00 p.m.

Beginning fifty years ago Roman Catholic Church Leaders worldwide have called attention to the ecological issue as a crisis stemming from ill-considered exploitation of nature, a crisis which threatens our existence and alienates us from the world we live in. In May 2015, drawing on this developing awareness and in view of the planned United Nations December Paris Summit Conference on the Environment, Pope Francis issued a major Document, Laudato Si’, addressed to “every person living on this planet” inviting “dialogue with all people about our common home.” He invited leaders of other religious communities to do the same.

This presentation explores considerations that prompt religious attention to the climate crisis: (1) the inter-connectedness of the created order; (2) recognition of human beings as embedded in an evolving cosmos; (3) the need for a spirituality that flows from an integral ecology; (4) appreciation of the climate impact on the most vulnerable of the earth; (5) the moral responsibility of inter-generational justice; (6) the need for new economic models for sustainable development. It also provides a summary of the projections of climate scientists that undergird scientific and theological concern.

George Griener, S.J., Professor Emeritus of Historical and Systematic Theology at the Jesuit School of Theology and the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley.After a Bachelor of Science in Physics in Alabama, graduate studies in theology at the Toronto School of Theology, and a doctorate in theology from the University of Tübingen, Germany, Dr. Griener has taught at Loyola University New Orleans, and now at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley since 1989. Several of his international doctoral students have focused on responses to the climate crisis, and he is Chair of the Climate Justice Committee of the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University. His recent research is on the interface between Christian Anthropology, Evolutionary Theory and Neuroscience.

LAUDATO SI ,  Wednesday, April 21 -4:00 p.m.

Pope Francis’s 2015 encyclical on the environment, advances magisterial Catholic Social Teaching to include interests and concerns of the environment. In other words, this document lays out the official Catholic social justice response to the climate crisis. Catholic Social Teaching, from 1891 until 2015 primarily focused on the rights of the most marginalized, especially the poor. This document expands the circle to include the natural world, a long-neglected moral concern for Christians. This lecture will address special concerns relating to Pope Francis’s encyclical, including its methodological process of writing, the social conditions of our “technocratic paradigm,” a new understanding of “sin,” and the challenge of moving toward an “ecological conversion.” Pope Francis’s encyclical, addressed to all men and women of good will, demands a new orientation toward sister earth in line with the vision of the Pontiff’s namesake, St Francis of Assisi.

Levi Checketts, PhD is an adjunct professor of religious studies and philosophy at Holy Names University and an adjunct lecturer of Catholic Social Teaching at Santa Clara University. His research focuses on how new technologies change the world we live in and demand new moral responses. He has previously sat on the GTU’s Doctoral Council and is the 2018 Charles Townes Fellow at the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences. He is an associate youth pastor at Jesus Love Korean Methodist Church in Cupertino and is currently researching the hegemonic influence of AI and how it threatens the dignity of the poor.

VOICES OF THE FUTURE –Youth Climate Activists Speak Out, THURSDAY, APRIL 22nd, 4:00 P.M.

“A Sustainable Diet is a presentation exploring the global food system and the consequences our diet can have on it. How do our dietary choices affect other countries and the lives of thousands of workers? How do our dietary choices affect underwater aquifers and global waterway systems? Every food item we buy is transported from somewhere and takes a certain amount of water, land, and energy to grow; the responsibility is handed to the consumer, to us, to make the right choices.

Karim Dergal is a high school senior in Miami, Florida. He is the co-founder of an educational outreach program at his high school. For two years, he, along with his peers, goes to different schools and hosts presentations on different environmental issues to raise awareness within the youth community. His passion for environmental science and advocacy has influenced him to pursue Environment and Sustainability in his coming years at Cornell University, among a group of the most brilliant and environmentally conscious student body.

Environmental Racism is a presentation which dives into the social injustices that occur which are related to the environment. The coming climate crisis presents many issues for the future, all of which are easily dealt with for people with wealth. The people who are already affected, and will continue to be affected, are marginalized minorities with little say in the matter. Only through educating the public and educating voters can we enact policies that can right these wrongs.

Corey Robinson is a high school junior in Miami, Florida. Having been involved in environmental activism since his first high school years, he has developed an affinity toward educating the public. He strongly believes in educating the public in environmental conservatism, because he states the environment is a resource which we have to use wisely. He has been involved in local government lobbying against environmentally damaging policies. Corey Robinson wants to pursue political science or mass communications in college to be able to reach wider audiences the right way.

HOMO OIKOS SACRALIS: Human beings in the environmental crisis. Friday, April 23, 4:00 P.M.

Climate change is changing the world we live in and how we as humanity will live on planet earth. It becomes more and more obvious that climate change is a socio-environmental crisis that raises the question who we are as human beings. Myoung will suggest that the biblical creation story can offer an anthropology to see each other as members of the same household.

Myoung was born and raised in Germany as a child of Korean immigrants. After studying engineering, he decided to enter seminary in Korea where he was ordained. He continued his studies at the GTU and has successfully defended his dissertation last February. As a German he knows that every generation has its historical responsibility. As a European he believes that diversity can be a strength if we learn to work together. As a Korean who grew up in Germany he knows that minorities can contribute to make a society more just and promote peace. He and his wife Anna has been with BPMH since August 2019.  They are expecting their first child, a boy, in August. 


We will hold a masked and socially distanced ceremony for groups of 10 at a time outdoors on Saturday between 4:00 and 5:30 p.m. at BPMH to pay homage to the Ilone Tribe on whose land we live, to plant a new tree and to bless the new Community Garden. (The time for the St. John’s ceremony to be announced in separate email) In preparation for this day and these plantings, you are asked the watch the film, Kiss the Ground, available on YouTube or Netflix. You can view this film anytime during the week that is convenient for you or you may view it with others at 11 a.m. on Saturday morning. An email with the link will be sent to you at that time. If you have already seen the film, you may ignore the email.

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