This one seems pretty straight forward at first glance – as the IEPC moves into its day that focuses on peace with all of God’s Creation, or peace with the earth. We need to care for the creation God has blessed us with, right? We need to be caretakers of the garden.
But this gets a bit harder when it gets into the weeds, particularly for those of us from the West. This summer, the CoB will entertain an Annual Conference Resolution on Climate Change – which is a good first step. But living in partnership with creation means so much more than just installing some solar panels, recycling more, or driving a Prius. It is about the totality of the way in which we live.
Are we willing to consider that we need to radically change the way we live? That in order to really bring peace to this world, we have to look at ourselves in the mirror, and consider that the standard of living to which we are accustom is not sustainable? That we should not support companies from the United States buying water rights in India, and charging people there for access? That we shouldn’t allow companies to set up factories in the United States and around the world in poor communities, communities that have no voice, and destroy their environment – bringing them poor health?
As the handbook says for today, “violence against the earth is violence against life, the future of life.” Are we ready, as the Church of the Brethren, to own this part of our responsibility for peace? Or, as a friend of mine once said, can you really be a pacifist and drive a Hummer?