Since I retired from pastoral ministry in 2010, I’ve found plenty to do! You might say I’m on a quest. Recently someone described me as a ‘faith based citizen activist’. I kind of like that!
My quest is to grow a conversation on climate change among people of faith in Lancaster County. I call this conversation
“Faith and Climate: What Would Lancaster County Do?”
That’s what this blog will be all about-THE CONVERSATION. I hope many people will join in.
I’ll tell you why I think this is so important, but first let’s take a closer look at the faith community of Lancaster County. Looking closer you’ll see that we don’t ALL have beards (not that there’s anything wrong with that 🙂 )
Did you know there are only 31,000 Amish people in our county out of a total population of 526,823 (2012), which means almost ½ million people in Lancaster County are not Amish!
So, if we’re not all Amish, what are we? A pretty mixed bag, I’d say. One thing is surely true- faith and religious belief are definitely prominent in Lancaster County! Here you’ll find Mennonite and Moravian, Brethren in Christ and Baptist, Jewish and Jehovah’s Witnesses, Catholic and Church of God, Evangelical Lutheran and Episcopalian, Buddhist and Bible Church, United Church of Christ and United Methodist, African Methodist Episcopal and Assembly of God plus Presbyterians, Friends, Unitarians and even Jains!
Altogether (2002 statistics) we have 662 congregations. In addition, like most places in the US, we have a growing number of people who would say they are ‘spiritual, but not religious’.
Yes, the Lancaster faith community is diverse and does not speak with one voice on any issue,let alone one that’s become so politicized like climate change!
I wonder if we can set politics aside for awhile because, once we do, we can see more clearly. Then we can look around at the increase in extreme weather all over the world. We can ask what climate scientists say it’s all about.
Then we can talk about what our faith says to us, think about what that might mean and consider how we can move beyond talking and start taking faithful action!
Thanks for coming along this far. I hope you will continue.