This fall, the Center will be partnering with Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) as they put on their annual Rooted and Grounded conference. The conference will take place September 27th through the 29th, and will be “A Conference on Land and Christian Discipleship.”
The Center is excited to be partnering with AMBS on the event because it is the first year that the conference will have a focus on climate change. It will feature speakers such as Karenna Gore, founder of the Center for Earth Ethics at Union Theological Seminary, as well as presentations from Mennonite speakers and theologians from around the country.
In particular, the Center is excited to emphasize Global South voices during the conference. Vurayayi Pugeni, Board of Reference member for the Center and Humanitarian Relief and Disaster Recovery Coordinator for MCC Canada will be presenting a workshop at the conference, which will focus on the adverse effects that climate change has on those in the Global South.
As well as contributing the Global South voice to the conference, the Center hopes to emphasize student engagement with the issue and with AMBS. As part of the commitment to the conference, the Center will be bringing students from Mennonite colleges to the conference and offering a space for discussion and reflection.
The event has a broad focus, as it hopes to engage with land issues from a Mennonite theological perspective. As it says on the AMBS website, “As God’s people, the church is called to imagine and embody alternative ways of relating to the land that cultivate shalom among human beings, the rest of creation and God. To do this, we must be deeply rooted in the biblical text and engaged with present-day movements to protect the land and its resources.”
AMBS put out a call for papers for the conference last month and will be accepting submissions until the 1st of July. They are looking for papers and individuals with an interest in the following topics:
- Climate change
- Watershed discipleship (a bioregional focus for faith)
- Place-based ecclesiology (mission, worship, community, etc.)
- Agriculture and care for the land
- Ecological regeneration and land restoration
- Revitalizing rural community
- Place and contemporary life (could include themes of migration, exile, technology, etc.)
- Race and land/place
If you are interested in submitting a paper or workshop proposal, you can find the details, and submission guidelines here.
The conference should be a great opportunity for anyone interested in the intersection of climate issues and theology, and in land and discipleship to engage in a welcoming, yet challenging environment, with others who share the same interest. More information about the conference can be found on the AMBS website. You can also follow along with the conference, and with the Center’s involvement in Global South voices and student engagement by subscribing to our newsfeed, as we will be updating regularly.