Do You Have a Deep Green Faith?
by the Rev. Kevin McGrane
Diocesan Creation Care Ministry Chair
Deep green faith is a key theological concept that is catching fire among the thought-leaders of the greater church, and it needs ministers who will carry this message to the greater community in which we find ourselves. We need to learn about deep green faith, then teach it, preach it, live it.
A deep green faith begins with the realization that we have a deeply dysfunctional relationship with creation itself. We are in the midst of a climate crisis, as seen by the extreme weather events and loss of plant and wildlife, yet the climate crisis is a symptom of a deeper issue - our dysfunctional relationship to creation itself.
Addressing the crisis is critical, but it won’t end the assault we continue to inflict on the planet. The trauma perpetrated on the planet by an industrial civilization, and all the avarice that comes along with it, is destroying the diverse forms of life on earth, including us.
A deep green faith takes seriously the collapse of the climate and all that it means, realizing that we need to reconcile ourselves with the earth, just as we would any human being who was harmed by our actions. If the planet is a living system, then our relation to it must be seen theologically as well as scientifically. We should treat the planet like one of the least of Jesus’ brothers and sisters (Matt. 25:40).
We must, as disciples of Jesus, dig deep into our faith and see our relationship to the earth as a core concept of our theology and spirituality, as well as our lifestyle. We must make its care as great a concern as our care for the poor, the sick, and lost, and the marginalized.
A deep green faith is the key to saving the planet, as much as any program or science we can create. A key opens locked doors and lets us enter new rooms, new homes, new worlds. A deep green faith is not an add-on to our theology and spirituality, it is one of the pillars of our faith.
We must remember that “God so loved the whole world” that he gave us God’s Son. We should love the world as God did and make it part of how we live, move, and have our being as disciples of Jesus. Please get involved in the Creation Care ministry in your parish; if there isn’t one, start one. Learn from the Creation Care Ministry in our diocese how you can develop a deep green faith that will help us reconcile ourselves to this earth, our island home.