The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago declares "Earth Year at LSTC"

For more than 20 years, LSTC has been one of the greenest seminaries in the United States. It will deepen and share that commitment with the church through activities focused on care of creation during "Earth Year at LSTC" starting in August 2009.

Earth Year will be LSTC’s first theme year, with the purpose of fostering engagement between the seminary and issues confronting the world.

The entire LSTC community will focus on care of creation including sustainability, environmental justice, congregational activism on behalf of the earth, and theological themes related to creation. LSTC professors will incorporate the theme in all areas of the curriculum (biblical studies, ministry, worship, theology).

Several special courses related to the theme will be offered during the year. Annual lectures and events such as the Lutheran Heritage Lecture, the Leadership Conference, and the annual interfaith scripture conference will have themes related to Earth Year. The theme year will also be integrated into new and returning students’ orientation, worship planning, and the work of LSTC’s centers (Zygon Center for Religion and Science, A Center of Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice, the Multicultural Center, the Language Resource and Writing Center).

Dean of Community Terry Baeder, Ph.D. student Rob Saler, and faculty member David Rhoads are leading the theme year planning. They will work with students, faculty and staff to foster involvement in the year’s activities, particularly through service projects.

An events page, Earth Year at LSTC, is posted on Facebook. To find the page, type “Earth Year at LSTC” in the Facebook search box. Details on events will be posted on Facebook and on LSTC’s web site.

Lectures will feature Naomi Davis of “Blacks for Green” and Larry Rasmussen, professor emeritus of Union Theological Seminary (NY). The Professional Leadership Conference in February will cover the theme with presentations by Carlton Waterhouse of Emory University and David Rhoads of LSTC. Classes include “Greening your Congregation and Community” and “The Future of Creation” with presentations by scientists and social organizers. Special weeks of worship will celebrate the LSTC covenant with creation (Fall) and Earth Week (Spring).  For more information, see “Earth Year” at www.lstc.edu.