This Letter to the Editor appeared in the Asheville Citizen-Time on Saturday, September 13, 2019. Many thanks to the collective wisdom of Eliza Stokes, Maureen Linneman, Karim Olaechea, and Mary and Kevin Bates.
A Pause that Disrupts
On Friday, September 20 at 5:30 at Pack Square, we at the Creation Care Alliance of WNC will step out of business as usual. At the invitation of young people across the globe, and in solidarity with Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg, we will join with the Youth Climate Strike in support of massive global climate action so the next generation can inherit a livable earth.
We need this holy disruption — a pause that transforms and reorients us toward life.
Indeed, this practice of stopping for the sake of life is as ancient as it is new. Many faith traditions encourage us to step out of normal routines and into a holy pause that renews our relationships with one another, creation and the Divine. In our faith tradition this practice is called Sabbath.
On the Sabbath we stop consuming, listen deeply and turn toward the sacred — facing the greater truths that lie beneath the clutter of compulsive and busy lives.
But we must follow such contemplation with action. In the current climate crisis, we cannot wait for others to do the hard work of addressing the ecological and social challenges of our day on our behalf. Instead, we must act with urgency on behalf of creation, our children and the most vulnerable among us.
So, we invite you to take a pause with us on September 20, to notice what it allows to come to the surface, and to follow such contemplation with intentional action — for the sake of life.
Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri and Rev. Kevin Bates of the Creation Care Alliance of WNC. The Creation Care Alliance of WNC is a program that inspires people of faith in WNC to act on climate change.