Eco-Lent Resources

Lent is a meaningful time in the church calendar to focus on watershed discipleship: How will you be a more faithful disciple within your watershed this season?

We suggest below a number of Lenten devotionals focused on care for creation and environmental justice. A member of the watershed discipleship community, C. John Hildebrand, put together a daily reading schedule for Elaine Enns and Ched Myers’ new book, Healing Haunted Histories: A Settler Discipleship of Decolonization, so you can read through it during Lent, knowing others are doing the same. Here are some of our suggestions for focusing your Lenten practice on watershed discipleship:

Image: “Sunset through Horatio N. May Chapel,” Tim Nafziger

Pre-order “Healing Haunted Histories” | Discount code

In Healing Haunted Histories, Elaine Enns and Ched Myers invite readers to consider how the call to follow Jesus is also a summons to racial justice and decolonization. They chart a path for how we can dig into our family histories to face our own “ghosts” of settler colonialism, Indigenous displacement, and white supremacy.

This 400-page book is equal parts: memoir (mostly focusing on Enns’ Mennonite family and community, who endured the Russian Civil War, fled the Soviet aftermath, and settled on Indigenous land in Saskatchewan in the 1920s);  social analysis; theological reflection, and workbook for those ready to “do their own work.”

For a limited time, friends of Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministries are eligible for a special discount off the softcover edition of Healing Haunted Histories $38 USD retail price. Get the coupon code and learn more>

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Celebrate MLKJ with a special (online) gathering

What a week it’s been! Epiphany indeed shed light on toxic white supremacy, challenging us to go deeper in our discipleship of decolonization and racial justice.

As we prepare for our upcoming Bartimaeus Kinsler Institute 2021 online next month, we invite you to the second of two pre-Institute “stepping stone” programs: celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. this Sunday, January 17, 2021 from 3:30–4:30 PST.

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Bartimaeus Kinsler Institute 2020 | February 17–21, 2020

Unsettling Histories | Decolonizing Discipleship | hukišunuškuy

Forest Home Camp, Oak View, CA

Register now through January 29, 2020 for this year’s Bartimaeus Kinsler Institute (BKI) hosted by Bartimaeus Cooperative Ministries. This year’s BKI builds on last year’s theme (although you don’t need to have gone to the Institute last year to gain much from this year’s experience). The gathering will focus on: Read more

New Resource | Congregational Manuals on Watershed Discipleship

An exciting new resource is available for use in congregations and interfaith groups interested in caring for the environment: Rev. Dr. Nancy Wright and Richard Butz, MFA, have created a Congregational Watershed Discipleship Manual in partnership with Vermont Interfaith Power & Light and Voices of Water for Climate.

They created two manuals: one with a Christian emphasis, Congregational Watershed Discipleship Manual: Faith Communities as Stewards of the World’s Waters (1st Christian edition), and another with an interreligious emphasis, Congregational Watershed Manual: Religious Communities as Stewards of the World’s Waters (1st Interreligious edition).

The manuals combine teachings around the spiritual and theological importance of water in Christianity and other faith traditions with practical ideas Read more

Incarnate in Nazareth

Editor’s note: Sam Greenlee preached this sermon on January 14, 2018 at City Life Church in Midtown Sacramento, CA.

by Sam Greenlee
Guest Contributor

The image in the meme above comes from The Lion King and shows Simba talking with his father, Mufasa. Mufasa is instructing Simba and says, “Look, everything the light touches is Sacramento.” Simba notes that the light doesn’t touch everything he can see and asks, “But what about that shadowy place?” Mufasa answers, “That’s Oak Park. You must never go there, Simba.”

This meme made the rounds a couple of years ago, and people edited it over and over again to update the “joke” for their context. There was one in which San Francisco was the light and Oakland was the dark. There is one in which Stockton is the shadowy place. There was one for Modesto and one for Fresno and one for Bakersfield. And of course, there is this one that makes a mockery of Oak Park, the neighborhood I call home. Read more

Christian Food Movement: an interview with Nurya Love Parish

by Cherice Bock and Nurya Love Parish

In 2014, Rev. Nurya Love Parish began organizing a network she called the Christian Food Movement, and started a farm-based ministry called Plainsong Farm in Michigan. A former Unitarian Universalist and now Episcopal priest, Parish preached on ecology, food, and faith as far back as 2002, but her vision for putting the themes of faith and ecology together in her life and ministry began to coalesce in 2014 when she encountered Fred Bahnson’s Soil & Sacrament: A Spiritual Memoir of Food and Faith, which led her to Wake Forest School of Divinity’s Food, Faith, & Religious Leadership Initiative. There, she heard about watershed discipleship, and hatched the idea for catalyzing a Christian Food Movement that connects Christians who are integrating food and faith, in the style of the Jewish Food Movement. Read more

Sacred Earth Youth Camp, Vancouver, BC, July 29-August 10

Youth ages “13-25ish” are invited to attend the third annual Sacred Earth Camp, organized by Salal + Cedar, a watershed discipleship community in Vancouver, British Columbia (Coast Salish Territory). Salal + Cedar hopes other watershed discipleship communities will send young people to learn together and build community. Read more

Mardi Gras & Watershed Discipleship: an interview with Tevyn East

This Tuesday is Mardi Gras or “Fat Tuesday,” the last day before Lent (the season of fasting and prayer leading up to Easter on the Christian calendar). On Mardi Gras, many people gather for big events called Carnival: eating, dancing, and making merry. Historically, this Christian festival provides a means to purge perishable items before Lent while also allowing space for a rebellious mockery of existing orders. This practice of over-the-top excess right before weeks of self-denial may seem to encourage the unhealthy cycle of binging and purging in Western culture, rather than a more sustainable equilibrium of “enough.” However, with the historical context of Carnival in mind, we can see it as a celebration of community vitality, which often must take the shape of a defiant rebellion against the unhealthy constraints of a repressive church hierarchy. With this lens in mind, how can we approach Mardi Gras as a practice of watershed discipleship? Read more