In a historic moment on October 4, 2023, 29 US denominations and faith organizations will join together to launch One Home One Future, a multi-faith campaign to strengthen vitality, relevance, and community connection across generations to care for Creation in local congregations nationwide.
This campaign is organized by Blessed Tomorrow, the faith arm of ecoAmerica, a network of major institutions and thought leaders in five sectors — faith, health, communities, higher education, and business — who have inspired millions of Americans on climate change in counties and communities nationwide.
Converting climate concern into action
According to Meighen Speiser, Executive Director of ecoAmerica, “People assume that folks around them–particularly people of faith–are unconcerned about climate change when the exact opposite is true. One Home One Future is a testament of how concern can convert into action, and how people of faith can set aside past differences to stand together for our common home.”
As a member of Blessed Tomorrow’s leadership circle for several years, I am excited to see this project launch under the direction of The Rev. Carol Devine, a leader in the faith and climate movement who has built a coalition of diverse religious partners working to advance climate solutions in faithful service to God.
Acknowledging the urgency and opportunity of the IPCC goal of seven years to make significant progress toward climate solutions, the partners will launch this campaign to make care for Creation more visible, empowering, accessible, and prolific. The number seven is significant across multiple faith traditions and offers a profound framework to champion climate action as a spiritual and ethical issue.
October 4th launch for One Home One Future Campaign
These faith leaders have chosen October 4th as the launch date for One Home One Future as it coincides with the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi which is the last day of the Season of Creation. It’s also the day that Pope Francis is launching his Laudato Sí 2.0. The day also falls during the Jewish festival of Sukkot and just after Milad un Nabi, the day when Muslims remember the birth of Muhammad.
As an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, I encourage my fellow clergy and all congregations to participate in the ONE HOME ONE FUTURE campaign. And I hope all other denominations, religions, and faith traditions will join in this crucial effort.
This is the ideal time to start a Creation care team in your house of worship, or to recharge the team if you already have one.
Congregations who join the One Home One Future campaign agree to visibly lead on Creation care. They are invited to display the One Home One Future banner in front of their house of worship and take action within any number of the seven pathways to educate, activate, and empower clergy, congregants, youth, and all spiritual people in meaningful and just climate solutions at the local, regional, and national level.
Congregations will be supported with a banner, congregational toolkit, a breadth of resources and tools relevant for their faith tradition, and the opportunity to connect and collaborate with other faith leaders and congregations within and across faiths nationwide.
One Home One Future recognizes that each of us can take steps to care for our shared home, every day.
Equitable climate action does not have to be a new burden or responsibility; it can and should be part of our existing priorities and enrich our everyday lives. The goal of the campaign is to inspire the participation of tens of thousands of congregations, in every state, over the next seven years.
Many denominational leaders, one united voice for our precious planet
Many denominational leaders are coming together in support of this initiative, including Rev. Teresa “Terri” Hord Owens, General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Bishop Vashti McKenzie, President and General Secretary of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA, Bishop E. Anne Henning Byfield, Presiding Bishop of the 13th Episcopal District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and Rev. Dr. Willie Gable Jr., Director Faith Based Initiatives of the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc.
Other leaders include Rev. Dr. Diane L. Givens Moffett, President and Executive Director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency, Becky O’Brien from Adamah, and Rev. Dr. Karen Georgia Thompson, General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ, who said:
“As people of many faiths, we are called to accelerate and amplify our action and advocacy to protect our given and shared home on this planet we call earth. We can make a difference in averting the climate crisis. The United Church of Christ is excited and grateful to be a part of this national faith and climate justice campaign, One Home One Future. I look forward to our United Church of Christ congregations across the nation participating in this campaign along with other advocates and people of faith.”
United Church of Christ’s Rev. Dr. Jim Antal added, “The One Home One Future campaign will show America that denominations and faith organizations are united in our commitment to care for God’s Creation. Whatever your faith tradition, taking action to protect and restore God’s Creation is central to your tradition’s teaching.”
Learn more and join at OneHomeOneFuture.org.
The Rev. Dr. Leah D. Schade is the Associate Professor of Preaching and Worship at Lexington Theological Seminary in Kentucky and ordained in the ELCA. Dr. Schade does not speak for LTS or the ELCA; her opinions are her own. She is the author of Preaching in the Purple Zone: Ministry in the Red-Blue Divide (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019) and Creation-Crisis Preaching: Ecology, Theology, and the Pulpit (Chalice Press, 2015). She is the co-editor of Rooted and Rising: Voices of Courage in a Time of Climate Crisis (Rowman & Littlefield, 2019). Her newest book is Introduction to Preaching: Scripture, Theology, and Sermon Preparation, co-authored with Jerry L. Sumney and Emily Askew (Rowman & Littlefield, 2023).