The Earthkeepers Podcast promotes global connection among ecological-minded people who believe that earth care is an integral part of spiritual life. Through conversations about topics like ecology, climate change, gardening, farming, social enterprise, theology, environmental justice, outdoor recreation, conservation and community development, we aim to inspire a movement of ordinary earthkeepers who will help heal the world. You can find and listen to all episodes below, or through the following podcast platforms:
EPISODE 75: CULTIVATING LAND AND COMMUNITY: HOPE FOR HAITI WITH RYAN ROBINSON AND DAVID SANON
In keeping with a focus on the environmental, political, and economic struggles of the Haitian people, Forrest talks with Ryan Robinson and David Sanon of Konbit Haiti. Konbit Haiti was founded jointly by a group of Americans and Haitians; they continue to work together to support family health, local business development, and environmentally sustainable practices to meet needs such as clean water, sanitation, and productive farming.
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EPISODE 74: ROOTS OF INJUSTICE IN HAITI: A CONVERSATION WITH RON AND CARLA BLUNTSCHLI
At the time of recording, the country of Haiti is in the midst of a socioeconomic and political crisis. In this episode, Forrest talks with Ron and Carla Bluntschli, Americans who have lived and served in Haiti for nearly four decades. They share their views on the roots of the unfolding humanitarian crisis, and also offer insights about environmental issues that are only becoming worse in the midst of increasing conflict and growing poverty. Importantly, their foundation—called N a sonje—works with internationals to promote awareness and understanding of Haitian history and culture. At the same time, they work with Haitians to promote restorative ecological practices.
EPISODE 73: LIFE, DEATH, AND COMPOST THEOLOGY: LEARNING FROM THE FARMINARY, WITH WESLEY WILLISON
In this episode, Forrest talks with Wesley Willison about his experiences at the Farminary—which, according to Princeton Seminary, is “a place where theological education is integrated with small-scale regenerative agriculture to train faith leaders”—leaders who care about ecology, sustainability, and food justice. Wesley is that kind of leader, and we’ll be discussing how his Farminary education has impacted every part of his life, his faith, and his leadership.
EPISODE 72: TREE BY TREE: PLANTING FOR THE WHOLE COMMUNITY OF CREATION, WITH SCOTT SABIN OF PLANT WITH PURPOSE
In this episode, Forrest talks with Scott Sabin, Executive Director of the organization Plant with Purpose — an international faith-based organization that empowers the poor in rural areas around the world where poverty is connected to deforestation. Importantly, their approach to community development includes not just the planting of food-producing trees on farms, but also the work of the reforestation and species diversification of publicly shared land. Among other things, Scott explains that the tens of millions of trees the organization has helped to plant over the years can seem insignificant when one looks at the enormity of the deforestation problem across the globe. However the crucial practice for staying the course is to focus on the part each of us can play, and trust God to multiply our efforts.
EPISODE 71: COMMUNITY WITH CREATION: A UGANDAN PERSPECTIVE ON LIVING WELL, WITH EDWARD OLARA
In this episode, Forrest talks with Dr. Edward Olara, a farmer and educator in Uganda. Edward was once Forrest’s student in the community development program at Northwest University. As friends, they’ve worked together in Uganda to encourage and empower development professionals. Among other things, Edward spends his days teaching about sustainable agriculture, community development, leadership, and modeling earthkeeping practices on his farm in northern Uganda. He is currently working on a book called The Elephant and the Farmers.
EPISODE 70: A NEW DAY: JAMES AND FORREST MARK THE START OF SEASON FOUR
In this episode, we launch season four of the Earthkeepers podcast. The last three years have been an amazing time of growth for us, both in terms of expansion of the Earthkeepers community around the world, and also in terms of establishing the ethos and vision of the podcast as a whole. In this brief episode, Forrest sits down with our Executive Producer, James Amadon; together they share a bit about lessons learned in season three, and we look ahead to new challenges in season four!
EPISODE 69: UNITY IN DIVERSITY: "INDIGENOUS THEOLOGY AND THE WESTERN WORLDVIEW" BY RANDY WOODLEY
In this episode, Forrest sits down with Dr. Randy Woodley who, with his wife Edith, leads Eloheh Indigenous Center for Earth Justice, where their work touches the lives of Native people and nonNative people alike. We’ll be talking about their work, and about Randy’s recent book, Indigenous Theology and the Western World View: A Decolonized Approach to Christian Doctrine. As you heard in the clip at the start of this episode, Randy challenges mainstream Western churches to embrace and be changed by diverse perspectives; indigenous theology in particular challenges the church to redefine the role of humankind as co-sustainers—not masters—of creation.
EPISODE 68: REBEL WITH A CAUSE: PRAYING OUTSIDE THE LINES WITH CHRISTINE ARONEY SINE
In this episode, Forrest talks with Dr. Christine Aroney Sine about how we can move beyond some of the habits and practices that are prescribed for us by religion and culture. In this conversation, she offers guidance for creating new forms and practices that can bring vitality to our spiritual lives, and she offers inspiration for designing new ways to gather communities around meaningful themes, symbols, and rituals. Christine and her husband, Tom Sine are the founders of Circlewood, the parent organization of the Earthkeepers podcast. Christine—a medical doctor by training—is the curator of the blog Godspace Light. She has authored several books that offer practical guidance for re-imagining old forms—and designing new practices, rituals, and ceremonies—or what many refer to as “liturgies”.
EPISODE 67: ENNEAGRAM FOR EARTHKEEPERS: DISCOVERING OUR PASSIONS AND MOBILIZING OUR COMMUNITIES WITH MATT SCHLEGEL
In this episode, Forrest is in conversation with teamwork consultant Matt Schlegel. Matt is the author of the book Teamwork 9.0 and host of the show Leadership Path of Growth on YouTube. In his unique approach to earth care, he employs the Enneagram—a system of nine personality types combining traditional wisdom with modern psychology. For many, the Enneagram is a powerful tool for understanding themselves and the people in their lives. For Matt Schlegel, it is a framework for accelerating progress on climate initiatives, and guiding communities through the steps of problem-solving towards resolution.
Listeners may also be looking for the photo of Matt on a solar bike that was mentioned in this episode: find it on our social media channels!
EPISODE 66: EARTHY SPIRITUALITY: LEARNING FROM FARMERS (AND CHILDREN AND DOGS), WITH NORMAN WIRZBA
In this episode, Forrest and James talk to Norman Wirzba, professor and author of a book called Agrarian Spirit: Cultivating Faith, Community, and the Land. In this book, Dr. Wirzba makes the case for a kind of spirituality that is grounded in deep awareness of creation. Among other things, this sort of humble, earthy spirituality that he encourages us to practice stands against the illusion of certainty and control that has made much of the church seem increasingly irrelevant these days—especially to younger generations.
EPISODE 65: NATURE, CULTURE, AND THE SACRED: A WOMAN LISTENS FOR LEADERSHIP WITH NINA SIMONS
In this episode, Forrest cohosts with Victoria Loorz, author of the book Church of the Wild: How Nature Invites Us into the Sacred. Together they’re in conversation with Nina Simons, cofounder of Bioneers—an organization that amplifies the voices of innovators who are coming up with practical and visionary solutions for the world’s most pressing environmental and social challenges. They talk in great part about her book titled Nature, Culture, and the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership. Among other things, this book makes a case for more cooperation, collaboration, and even community between all those who are working for the good of this planet that we share.
EPISODE 64: DIVERSITY IN COMMON CAUSE: JESSICA ZIMMERLE OF EARTH MINISTRY/WAIPL
In this episode, Forrest talks with Jessica Zimmerle, Advocacy Director at Earth Ministry. Earth Ministry, part of the Interfaith Power & Light network in the US, aims to inspire and mobilize people of faith from diverse traditions, to advocate for strong environmental policies, and offer guidance to faith communities working toward environmental justice. Importantly, they work to create conversation and collaboration that doesn’t ignore cultural and ideological differences; instead, they place a high value on diversity that brings new perspective and broadens understanding.
EPISODE 63: WHAT YOUR FOOD ATE, WITH AUTHORS DAVID MONTGOMERY AND ANNE BIKLÉ
In this episode, Forrest talks with Dave Montgomery and Anne Biklé about their new book, What Your Food Ate: How to Heal Our Land and Reclaim Our Health. The authors aim to raise our awareness of the community of life in the soil beneath our feet—or more importantly, the soil on the farms that grow our food. They make a compelling case for changing the ways that food is grown so that the life of the soil is respected and cared for . . . and so that the food produced by healthier soil makes us healthier in turn.
EPISODE 62: CARBON COSTS: UNDERSTANDING OFFSETTING WITH BRITTANY MICHALSKI OF CARBON STEWARDS
In this episode, Forrest talks with Brittany Michalski of Climate Stewards, USA. The aim of Climate Stewards is to make the world a healthier, fairer place for all creation. They do this by helping individuals and communities to become more aware of the planet-warming carbon emissions that they produce in their day-to-day activities. They also provide opportunities for people to essentially "make up" for their harmful carbon emissions by putting money towards carbon reducing projects around the world--projects that improve the lives of communities in less developed countries around the world.
EPISODE 61: FOR LOVE OF GOD AND NATURE: CLIMATE VIGIL SONGS WITH PETER FARGO AND ISAAC WARDELL
In this episode, Forrest talks to Peter Fargo, co-founder of the Climate Vigil movement, and Isaac Wardell, co-founder of the Porter’s Gate arts collective. They discuss the collaborative project created by these two organizations--a new Christian worship album called Climate Vigil Songs. This album (which is sampled in this conversation) invites us to respond to climate change in ways that are meant to help us engage the challenges we face from spiritual perspectives, and even to understand creation care and earth advocacy as acts of worship.
EPISODE 60: COURAGE TO FACE THE FUTURE: TIMOTHY BEAL ON HIS NEW BOOK, WHEN TIME IS SHORT
In this episode, Forrest sits down with Timothy Beal to talk about his new book, When Time is Short: Finding Our Way in the Anthropocene. His work is unlike most books in the realm of environmental issues or earthcare, because it challenges readers to truly engage the possibility that irreversible climate damage to the planet is already upon us, and only going to get worse—and that those changes might even lead to the end of the human species. His book provokes readers to have the courage to acknowledge that possibility, and to ask: How ought we to live our lives now, in light of that possible future?
EPISODE 59: GREEN MONEY: FIGHTING CLIMATE CHANGE WITH SMART INVESTING, WITH ZACH STEIN
In this episode, Forrest talks with Zach Stein, co-founder of Carbon Collective. Carbon Collective is the first online investment advisor that is 100% focused on combating climate change. They help individuals and organizations invest in diversified, low-fee, climate-focused portfolios. By helping investors know which companies are truly operating in ways that are in keeping with a zero-carbon future, Carbon Collective helps people who want to live greener lives collectively focus their resources and their influence as consumers in ways that work for the good of the planet.
EPISODE 58: ON WILD CHILDREN, HUNTING AND THE POETRY OF PLACE: WITH JOEL PONTIUS
In this episode we talk to Joel Pontius, Associate Professor of Sustainability and Environmental Education at Goshen College. Joel shares with us how place-based formational experiences—especially encounters with the natural world—help people to become more attuned to their contexts, and more aware of their unique role in caring for creation. He explains how this approach impacts not just his teaching, but his ways of parenting as well.
EPISODE 57: SOUTH AFRICAN SENSIBILITY: ABIGAIL FEHRSEN, LIESL STEWART, AND THE FOOD CLUB MOVEMENT
In this episode we talk with Abigail Fehrsen and Liesl Stewart—two women in South Africa who gathered together a small community of people in order to purchase food in bulk, directly from local farmers. From that initial small, alternative food network, the Food Club movement was born. Now there are many such groups throughout the country—communities of people seeking a more socially just and ecologically connected relationship to their food, the land, and the farmers who care for land. While they never set out to create a movement in South Africa, Abigail and Liesl model the principle that great things can come from simply taking small steps to meet the needs in front of you.
EPISODE 56: UPROOTED: UKRAINIAN IDENTITY AND THE LOSS OF LAND, WITH TANYA MACHABELI
In this episode, Forrest talks with Tanya Machabeli, Director of the Nehemiah Project in Ukraine. Tanya is one of the courageous Ukrainians helping to provide shelter, food, and medical care to those who have been displaced by Russian aggression. Speaking to us from her war-torn country, she explains that some of the most profound costs of the war in Ukraine have to do with damage to the land itself, because the very identity of the Ukrainian people is so tied to the land. Tanya insists, though, that despite the current conflict, this connection between land and identity will endure, as it has endured other crises in Ukraine’s history.
EPISODE 55: BRIAN MCLAREN ON HIS NEW BOOK: DO I STAY CHRISTIAN?
In this special encore of a recent webcast, Forrest is in conversation with Brian McLaren about his book called Do I Stay Christian: A guide for the Doubters, the Disappointed, and the Disillusioned. Forrest cohosts with Victoria Loorz of the Wild Church Network, and Kate Davis from the Center for Transforming Engagement at The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology. Together, they pay particular attention to Brian’s ideas about something he calls “re-wilding.” As he describes it in his book, re-wilding is all about re-aligning and re-orienting our hearts, minds, and bodies with the natural world. Re-wilding is about re-connecting to the earth as our teacher, and seeking the wisdom that is found in wilderness.
EPISODE 54: STRONGER TOGETHER: MOBILIZING COMMUNITIES OF RESISTANCE, WITH DOMINIC FRONGILLO
In this episode, Forrest talks to Dominic Frongillo, a young climate advocate, politician, and teacher from New York State. Dominic was the youngest person ever elected to serve on the City Council in Caroline, New York, and one of the youngest deputy mayors in the U.S. He is also the cofounder and executive director of Elected Officials to Protect America, an organization whose mission it is to create a safe, prosperous, and healthy planet by supporting and mobilizing “elected officials and civic leaders to protect the environment, and fight climate change.” In this conversation, Dominic helps us understand that real change can happen when courageous individuals help motivate whole communities around the common cause of environmental and social justice, at the local or the global level.
EPISODE 53: BETTER TOGETHER: THE MULTIFAITH NETWORK FOR CLIMATE JUSTICE
In this episode, we talk with members of the Multifaith Network for Climate Justice in Bellingham, a small city in the north of Washington State. We hear from Deb Cruz from the Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship, Steve Hansen—a Buddhist from the Insight Meditation Society, and Andrea Shupack from Congregation Beth Israel. Rooted in a sense of spiritual and moral responsibility to protect the Earth, the mission of the Multifaith Network for Climate Justice is to engage and connect different faith and wisdom traditions in responsive, collaborative community.
EPISODE 52: MOBILIZING MONEY FOR GREATER GOOD: TREVOR THOMAS OF ETHINVEST
When it comes to living in better relationship to the rest of creation, one aspect of our lives that we don’t talk about enough is money. How we earn it, how we spend it, how we save and how we invest—these subjects aren’t often thought of as aspects of earthkeeping. In fact though, if we aren’t thoughtful and intentional about our finances, the way we use and keep money has the potential to do harm to others and to the community of creation. In the same way, money used wisely and strategically has the power to enact much good in the world. The same could be said, really, when we consider how we invest our time and our talents. In this episode, we’ll get some insight on wise and ethical investing from Trevor Thomas, who works for a company called Ethinvest, based in Australia.
EPISODE 51: FARMING TO HEAL THE LAND: NATHAN AABERG OF LIBERTY PRAIRIE FOUNDATION
In this episode, Forrest and James talk with Nathan Aaberg, Director of Conservation and Working Lands at the Liberty Prairie Foundation, an organization that is committed to building a world in which food production regenerates the soil and land conservation heals the planet. Nathan lives at Prairie Crossing, a conservation community that respects the environment and enables residents to experience a strong connection between community and the land. A big part of the work Nathan involves equipping and supporting farmers in the American midwest who are committed to sustainable, restorative approaches to farming that respect the land.
EPISODE 50: FARMING HEALS US: YEAWA ASABI AND RAY WILLIAMS OF BLACK FARMERS COLLECTIVE AND YES FARM
In season three of the podcast, we are dedicating a number of our episodes to the exploration of environmental justice themes. In this episode, Forrest talks with Ray Williams, Director of Black Farmers Collective, and Yeawa Asabi, a volunteer at Yes Farm, an urban community project that the Collective has established in the heart of Seattle. Yeawa has also been a student in the graduate program where Forrest served as a professor. As is the case with so many of his students, Forrest learned new things from Yeawa—such as the restorative power of farming to heal the social wounds of her generation.
Special thanks to those who helped produce the first 50 episodes of Earthkeepers: Forrest Inslee, James Amadon, Dave Ulfers, Forrest Reed, Rachelle Nordman, and Jessalyn Gentry. Thank you for your fine work!
EPISODE 49: SPEAKING FOR CLIMATE JUSTICE: MALAWIAN ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALIST MATHEWS MALALTA, JR.
In this episode, Forrest talks with Mathews Malata Jr., an environmental journalist and president of the Association of Environmental Journalists in Malawi. He and his colleagues are dedicated to bringing attention to serious environmental concerns; oftentimes that means uncovering systemic corruption, but also advocating for more just policies on topics like forestry, waste management, and the protection of green spaces. Journalists like Mathews seek to make people more aware of the impacts of the ongoing climate crisis, and of the need for every Malawi citizen to work for the preservation and protection of their beautiful country. At the same time, Mathews points out that the struggle for environmental justice is a global one—since most of the catastrophic impacts of climate change in Malawi are actually caused by the harmful habits of nations in the global north.
EPISODE 48: RESOLVE FOR A LIFETIME: PURSUING ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE WITH JIMMY MCGEE
In this episode, Forrest talks with Jimmy McGee, the CEO and President of the Impact Movement, an organization whose primary focus is to help develop students of African descent into leaders who impact the world for good. Part of that process involves helping students to become agents of social and environmental justice whatever their vocations might be. For any of us who would dedicate themselves to seeking justice, he contends, we must resolve to do so for the long run.
EPISODE 47: A BETTER ENDING: SANDY GIBSON OF BETTER PLACE FORESTS
Is it possible to think green even when it comes to burials and funerals? In this episode, Forrest is with Sandy Gibson, Co-founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Better Place Forests—an organization that supports people in their end-of-life arrangements while conserving and protecting natural areas. In doing so, they practice their core mission of “helping every person to write a better ending to their story.” The memorial forests that they are creating—as an alternative to cemeteries—literally make it possible to leave this world a greener place when we’re gone!
EPISODE 46: ART, ECOLOGY, AND SPIRIT: JASON MYERS OF ECOTHEO COLLECTIVE
In this episode, Forrest talks with Jason Myers, Executive Director of the EcoTheo Collective—a virtual community of people devoted to exploring the possibilities at the intersection of art, spirituality, and ecology. He is also Editor of the EcoTheo Review, a journal that publishes work exploring themes ranging from creation care to creativity, and earth justice to social justice.
EPISODE 45:HOPE AND HARD TRUTHS: FEELING GUILTY WITH FORREST AND JAMES
IIn this episode, Forrest and James do some looking back at the last six months, talking about the need to stay hopeful even when confronted with the hard facts of climate change—and also about the possibility that a little bit of 'guilty conscience' can drive us to make changes in the way we live. They consider some of the themes they heard and the lessons they learned from the last six months of episodes, and talk about where the podcast will be going in the new year.
EPISODE 44:THE LANGUAGE OF DARKNESS AND LIGHT: WELCOMING SOLSTICE WITH MARY DEJONG
In this episode we talk with Mary Dejong, founder of Waymarkers, about the upcoming solstice on December 21—that day in the "wheel of the year" when the northern hemisphere is tilted farthest away from the sun, making it the shortest and darkest day of the year there, and traditionally, the start of winter. It is also the day in the the southern hemisphere when the earth is tilted furthest toward the sun, marking the first day of summer there. From her home in the north, Mary explains how solstice can be a time for wholeheartedly embracing the change of seasons—and even learning to love the dark days of winter. Whether we are in the north or the south, can learn to hear what the earth is speaking—in a language of darkness and light—to those who have ears to hear.
EPISODE 43:BECOMING ROOTED: RANDY WOODLEY AND HIS NEW BOOK OF DAILY REFLECTIONS
In this episode we talk with Randy Woodley about his new book, Becoming Rooted: One Hundred Days of Reconnecting with Sacred Earth. Randy and his wife Edith lead Eloheh Indigenous Center for Earth Justice, and their work touches the lives of Native people and non-Native people alike. As Randy points out, everyone has indigenous connections to some place in the world. One of the core purposes of his new book is to help people to discover their own indigenous roots, even as they seek to learn from the Native people wherever they now live.
EPISODE 42:GOING GREEN: AN INDIAN CULTURAL PERSPECTIVE WITH VIDHYA AND SASHI CHINTALA
In this episode Forrest and James talk with Sashi and Vidhya Chintala. Since moving to the US from India, this couple—along with their daughter Eva—have sought to “green” every aspect of their everyday lives. From their distinctively Indian cultural perspective, they offer unique and challenging insights into the nature of an earthkeeping lifestyle.
EPISODE 41:KATHARINE HAYHOE ON HER BOOK, SAVING US: A CLIMATE SCIENTIST'S CASE FOR HOPE AND HEALING IN A DIVIDED WORLD
In this episode we talk with Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, author of the new book Saving Us: A Climate Scientist’s Case for Hope and Healing in a Divided World. Katharine offers encouraging, practical advice about how to engage in conversations about earthcare and climate change with the people in our lives, finding common ground and avoiding politicized terms that can derail conversations. This interview was conducted before a live online audience, and was cosponsored by Village Books and the North Cascades Institute.
EPISODE 40: CREATION CARE & COMMUNITY: ERIKA ALVAREZ AND JOHANN RUIZ OF CASA ADOBE
In this episode we talk with Erika Alvarez and Johann Ruiz of Casa Adobe. Casa Adobe is an intentional community of people in Costa Rica working together to care for creation, build true relationships, and nurture their faith lives. At the heart of their values is their belief that environmental justice and social justice cannot be separated.
EPISODE 39: WILD SPIRITUALITY: A CONVERSATION WITH AUTHOR VICTORIA LOORZ
In this episode Forrest talks with Victoria Loorz, author of the forthcoming book titled, Church of the Wild: How Nature Invites Us into the Sacred. Victoria is the cofounder of the Wild Church Network, a broad association of religious communities that practice faith life in ways that foster connectedness to all of creation. Victoria also helped start the Seminary of the Wild, an experiential education and formation program for spiritual leaders seeking to pioneer new earth-centered faith practices.
EPISODE 38: EVERYDAY EARTHKEEPING:IDEAS FOR GREENER LIVING, WITH COURTNEY CHRISTENSEN OF SPARKS&MATCHES
In this special episode we get very practical, focusing on five easy lifestyle changes that can help us to live more sustainably. We talk with Courtney Christenson, founder of Sparks & Matches—a nonprofit organization committed to inspiring people to be changemakers in the realms of social and environmental justice. We hope this episode will help our listeners see that all of us have countless opportunities in our everyday lives to make simple, doable changes that benefit the health of the planet.
EPISODE 37: SINGING OUR PLACES: A CELTIC SENSIBLITY OF GOD IN CREATION, WITH JEFF JOHNSON
Jeff Johnson, an acclaimed musician whose art spans a diversity of styles including Progressive Rock, Jazz, New Age, and Contemplative Worship is the guest of this week's podcast. Throughout this podcast, some of Jeff's compositions are interwoven with conversation about leading worship, encountering nature, valuing creation and how all of these interact with each other within the music. Within his 40-year career, Jeff has written music for a Martin Scorsese film, collaborated with musician Phil Keaggy, and recorded original music for the Wyndham Hill label.
EPISODE 36: FOR A GREENER FUTURE: 2020S FORESIGHT WITH TOM SINE AND DWIGHT FRIESEN
In this episode, Forrest talks to the authors of a book called 2020s Foresight: Three Vital Practices for Thriving in a Decade of Accelerating Change. Co-author Tom Sine is the author of many books and has influenced many lives. That influence includes this podcast as the Earthkeepers podcast is an expression of Circlewood, a non-profit organization which grew out of another non-profit organization named Mustard Seed Associates, which was founded by Tom and his wife Christine. Co-author Dwight Friesen is a professor at The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology and, together, Dwight and Tom make the case that people of faith need to face the fast-moving changes and challenges of our time with love, fearlessness and innovation that both look clearly at our times and reflect God's purposes for those times.
EPISODE 35: CELTIC CREATION CARE: CHANGING THE CHURCH TO SAVE THE PLANET, WITH RAY SIMPSON
When the Christian Church became an indoors church, something vital was lost, according to Rev. Ray Simpson, author of Celtic Christianity and Climate Crisis: Twelve Keys for the Future of the Church and founder of a monastic order named The Community of Aidan and Hilda. In order to regain what was lost, Ray says, we need to humble ourselves and listen to indigenous spirituality, including Celtic spirituality. These can teach us, for instance, about reciprocity with creation, an important part of the 10 Waymarks (Ways of Life) for the Community of Aiden and Hilda.
EPISODE 34: EQUITY OUTDOORS: ALEX BAILEY ON ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE, EDUCATION, AND NATURE
In this episode we talk with Alex Bailey, Senior Director of the Outdoor School in the Hill Country of Texas. The Outdoor School partners with hundreds of qualifying schools and nonprofit groups each year to provide transformative, educational experiences in nature, free of charge. The program especially targets youth in Texas who would not otherwise be able to afford this life-changing outdoor experience. Alex is also the founder of an organization called Black Outside, Inc.—whose purpose it is to reconnect black youth to the outdoors.
EPISODE 33: GREEN CONSERVATIVES: CHRIS BARNARD OF AMERICAN CONSERVATION COALITION
In this episode, we talk with Chris Barnard, Policy Director at the American Conservation Coalition. The mission of the American Conservation Coalition—or ACC—is to change the narrative on environmental discussions by promoting a mix of free-market, pro-business, and limited-government environmentalism. They focus their work of advocacy and issues awareness toward a college-age demographic and are also active in the political realm, working with leaders and lawmakers at all levels of government. In his work with the ACC, Chris speaks with particular passion and authenticity that encourages conservative-leaning folks to defy stereotypes, and to embrace earth care as a central component of their political values.
In this episode, Circlewood Executive Director James Amadon joins Forrest for a look at important recent events in the realm of earth care. They offer commentary on interesting points of intersection between these happenings and the challenging themes of recent Earthkeepers podcast episodes—and share some exciting ideas for future directions of the podcast as well.
In this episode we talk with Caroline Pomeroy, Director of a global environmental organization called Climate Stewards, based in the United Kingdom. Climate Stewards is committed to helping individuals and communities learn how to reduce their carbon footprint. At the same time, they offer the opportunity to balance our negative impacts on the environment with investment in positive impact projects all around the world—through a process called carbon offsetting. In explaining this opportunity to us, Caroline offers us one more powerful tool in our efforts to become better earthkeepers.
In this episode we talk with Jay Matenga, Executive Director of the World Evangelical Alliance Mission Commission. Jay is known for bringing unconventional thinking to his work—perspectives that confront status quo assumptions, and call into question the “industrial ethics” that cause us to be separated from the earth—and from one another. From his grounding in indigenous Maori culture of New Zealand, his insights “cut new grooves of understanding” about how we might live differently with our ecologies.
In this episode we talk with Courtney Christenson, founder of Sparks and Matches—an organization committed to inspiring women to be changemakers in the realms of social and environmental justice. Courtney helps us to see that all of us have countless opportunities in our everyday lives to make choices that impact the health of the planet.
IN THE REALMS OF NATURE, ART, & SPIRIT: CONVERSATIONS WITH ARTISTS LENAE NOFZIGER AND ALYCIA SCHEIDEL
Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “For in the true nature of things, if we rightly consider, every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of gold and silver.” Sometimes, we need artists to remind us how to see well, and how to “rightly consider” what lies beyond the surface of nature. In this episode we feature two artists whose work helps us to see beyond the surface of the created world. The first guest is poet Lenae Nofziger, who begins by reading three of her poems: "Sacrament," "A Word," and "Sacred Ground." The second guest is wildlife photographer Alycia Scheidel who says, "Nature is really my church. It is my place of worship. It is where I go to find God." You will find links to their work in the podcast show notes here.
EARTHCARE IS PEOPLECARE: WITH MILMER MARTINEZ VERGARA OF PLANT WITH PURPOSE
This episode's guest, Milmer Martinez Vergara, is a Program Officer with the international development organization, Plant with Purpose. A conservation biologist working with Latin American projects, Milmer assures listeners that the ecosystem can provide what is needed for all to not just survive, but to flourish and emphasizes the importance of considering the environment when making decisions. Furthermore, since ecosystems don't stop at borders, finding solutions to global problems must also go beyond borders.
INNOVATIVE BUSINESS THINKING FOR COMMUNITY-BASED EARTHCARE: RYAN METZGER OF RIDWELL
In this episode we talk with Ryan Metzger, the CEO of Ridwell, a groundbreaking organization that is pioneering a different approach to recycling and repurposing. Ryan and his young son Owen cofounded this growing company that helps people keep things out of landfills by picking up items that recycling companies normally wouldn’t take. They saw a problem and took risks to try new ways to solve it with an innovative business model centered around community resources and partnerships. Today, they are on a mission to empower “neighbors and communities to build a less wasteful future.”
THE POWER OF SPORTS TO CHANGE THE WORLD: ROGER MCCLENDON OF GREEN SPORTS ALLIANCE
Forrest cohosts this episode with Beth Knox, President of the Seattle Sports Commission and a board member of Circlewood, the parent organization of this podcast. Together we talk to Roger McClendon, Executive Director of the Green Sports Alliance—an organization that leverages the influence of sports to promote healthy, sustainable communities. We talk about the power sports has to unify people and to help form common vision, engaging big issues like climate change and systemic racism.
EARTH SOLIDARITY: LEARNING TO ADVOCATE FOR —AND AS—CREATION, WITH MARY DEJONG
In this episode we talk with Mary DeJong, founder of Waymarkers, an organization which teaches people to trust themselves and their own power to read the sacred script right outside their door, in the sanctuary of the wild. Mary helps people shift their world views to understand that we, as human beings, are not separate from the rest of creation, but are instead an integral part of it. This shift in perspective completely changes our motivation for environmental advocacy and earthkeeping.
IN DIVERSITY IS OUR STRENGTH: IN SUPPORT OF THE SMALL-SCALE FARMER, WITH TIMOTHY WISE
In this episode we talk to Timothy A. Wise, author of Eating Tomorrow: Agriculture, Family Farmers, and the Battle for the Future of Food who advocates for a more sustainable, earth-friendly mode of development than industrial agriculture, which, he explains, does much to harm the environment and disrupt local cultures. We need, he says, to support the work of small farmers, whose local knowledge and relationship to the land helps them farm in ways that promote environmental health and produce food that is better for us. Recently, we interviewed a guest on this show representing the African Green Revolution Forum—an entity that promotes large-scale agriculture involving multinational companies as the key to Africa’s economic development. Some listeners asked if we could present an alternative view that might help us understand the risks and challenges of the AGRF approach and Timothy Wise provides that differing perspective.
THE ART OF SEEING: HANNAH & NATHAN ANDERSON ON THEIR NEW BOOK, TURNING OF DAYS
In this episode, we talk with author Hannah Anderson, and her husband and illustrator Nathan Anderson. They discuss their deep roots in the natural world and their desire to help others see and learn from the creation around them in new ways. Together Hannah and Nathan have collaborated on a book that will be released this week called Turning of Days: Lessons from Nature, Season, and Spirit. Through poignant meditations and detailed drawings, this moving work helps readers to perceive the lessons that are present in every aspect of creation—if only we have eyes to see and ears to hear.
BONUS - Click HERE for a video of Hannah and Nathan Anderson exploring how the natural world can enrich your life regardless of your quarantine situation.
A LIFE OF MEANING: AN INTRODUCTION TO PERMACUTURE WITH DAVE BOEHNLEIN
In this episode we talk to Dave Boehnlein—co-founder of Terra Phoenix Design and author of the book Practical Permaculture. Dave helps us to understand some of the basic tenets of permaculture thinking and practice. According to him, there is a place in permaculture for everyone, no matter what their skills or interests might be. In fact, he contends that this way of thinking and being is something that can help any of us to find greater meaning in our lives.
LOOKING BACK TO LOOK AHEAD:
LAUNCHING SEASON 2 WITH FORREST AND JAMES
To kick off Season 2, cohosts Forrest and James look back on lessons from 2020 and highlight signs of hope for 2021. Along the way they talk about rewilding lawns, turning a house into a solar power plant, the future of the Paris Climate Accords, and the debate over how many bobcats were seen by James' children.
See below for photos from places mentioned in the episode, as well as a video from the infamous bobcat sighting.
SAVING FORESTS BY CHANGING LIVES: THE YOUNG INNOVATORS AT EAST AFRICA ENERGY SOLUTIONS
In this episode we connect to three friends at East Africa Energy Solutions—friends who are creating ways to provide energy to rural Ugandans, ways that are both cheap and sustainable. By helping people to create their own methane gas with low-tech waste processors called biodigesters, they are giving people a clean alternative to cooking with wood and charcoal—thus helping Ugandans to save money, live healthier, more productive lives, and in the process, slow the destruction of the country’s remaining forests. As part of a generation of young idealists, they are relentlessly hopeful and fiercely committed to the belief that they have the power to change lives and save ecologies.
AFRICA RISING: DEBISI ARABA AND THE AFRICAN GREEN REVOLUTION FORUM
In this episode we talk with Dr. Debisi Araba, Managing Director of the African Green Revolution Forum. The AGRF is an organization that fosters community and collaboration among countries across all of Africa. Focusing on agriculture in particular, the African Green Revolution Forum works to accelerate the continent’s drive toward economic growth, human flourishing, and environmental health. Africa is rising, and it is the passion of people like Debisi that is driving the vision. He joins our conversation in this episode from Kenya.
EMPOWERING A NEW GENERATION OF EARTHKEEPERS: CHRIS ELISARA AND CREATION CARE STUDY PROGRAMS
In this episode we talk to Dr. Chris Elisara--visionary educator, social entrepreneur, and filmmaker. Having grown up in New Zealand, Chris’ international perspective makes him especially suited to his role as chair of the World Evangelical Alliance's Creation Care Task Force. He is also the founder of Creation Care Study Programs—an organization that provides opportunities for university students to devote an entire semester to learning about creation care in a community setting. He has devoted much of his life to equipping and empowering students because he is convinced that the future of the planet depends on the creative, problem-solving capacities of younger generations.
IT TAKES ALL KINDS: ERIC LONG ON WHY EARTHKEEPING NEEDS SCIENTISTS, THEOLOGIANS, AND EVERYONE ELSE
In this episode we talk with Dr. Eric Long, a biology professor who has learned to live in the space between science and theology. In our conversation about wildlife ecology and ecotheology, we consider the important truth that everyone can be an ecologist—or a theologian for that matter. Eric reminds us that anyone can find ways to work for the good of the earth, no matter what their vocation is. You don’t need a degree in environmental science to understand ecology, or a theology degree to see the ways that God is revealed in nature. In this episode we encourage people to think out of the box when it comes to figuring out how their jobs, hobbies, and even their community and family lives, can all be directed toward promoting the health of the planet. Earthkeepers believe in greening everything!
INDIGENIZING OUR WORLDVIEWS: A NATIVE VISION FOR EARTHKEEPING, WITH RANDY WOODLEY
In this episode we’ll be talking to Rev. Dr. Randy Woodley—Keetoowah Cherokee teacher, theologian, activist, farmer, and the author of several books. In our conversation today, we focus on a Native theology of land and environment—a subject of particular interest to Earthkeepers, who have come to understand the Western world’s desperate need for new ways of being in and with creation.
RAISING UP A GENERATION OF EARTHKEEPERS: BONNIE CRETTON AND THE WOODSONG FOREST SCHOOL
In this episode we talk to Bonnie Cretton—founder and director of Woodsong Forest School in southeast Tennessee. Bonnie is committed to raising up a generation of children who see themselves as integrally connected to all life on earth. She believes that when children are educated in ways that promote a sense of belonging to all nature, they will inevitably grow up to be earthkeepers.
A CALL FOR REFORMATION: FAITH, CREATION CARE, AND A NEW KIND OF CHURCH WITH TRI ROBINSON
In this episode we talk with Tri Robinson—rancher, environmentalist, retired evangelical pastor, and the author of several books. He is also the subject of a recently released film entitled Cowboy and Preacher: The Life and Times of Tri Robinson. In this strange era when so many religious folks deny climate change, and actively ignore issues of environmental injustice, Tri has dedicated much of his life to persuading conservative Christians that their faith actually requires them to care for the earth. At the same time, Tri stands with those who stand outside ofconservative culture, and offers visions of a new kind of Christ-follower . . . and a new kind of church. Listen in as we explore his hopeful vision, and learn how this man moved past religious politics to become an advocate for God’s love toward all of creation.
DISMANTLING ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTIONS: A GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE SPEAKS OUT
This episode features an employee of a federal land management agency who has much to say about the current administration's systematic dismantling of programs and laws that have been developed over the years to preserve and restore the health of the environment. According to the Brookings Institute, in this last summer alone the current administration has loosened restrictions on methane emissions from oil wells, undermined the process of determining energy efficiency requirements for appliances, moved to open Alaska's Arctic Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration, and weakened core elements of the Endangered Species Act. On the condition on anonymity, our guest has agreed to share an insider's view of the relentless attacks being mounted on this matrix of protections that have taken generations to put into place.
ENVIRONMENTAL ADVOCACY WHEN OTHERS DON'T BELIEVE: RACHEL JONES AND JASON LYLE ON LIFE IN THE AMERICAN SOUTH
In this episode we’ll be talking to Rachel Jones, who teaches at a college in Tennessee, and Jason Lyle, who leads an international nonprofit and serves in a church in Georgia. Both live in places where there is cultural ambivalence about the importance of earthkeeping, and for some, even outright denial of climate change realities. Rachel and Jason though have each found creative ways to express their love of creation, and to speak out of their passion for environmental justice in ways that don’t shut down the conversation.
THE JOURNEY THUS FAR: FORREST INSLEE AND JAMES AMADON ON THE FUTURE OF EARTHKEEPERS
In this episode, Forrest and James Amadon review the episodes that we’ve created in the first six months of the Earthkeepers podcast. We identify some of the themes that have emerged, consider some of the personal lessons we’ve learned, and dream a bit about where the podcast is headed in the future!
A VISION FOR GLOBAL COMMUNITY: RANDY BORMAN AND THE COFÁN FOREST GUARDIANS
In this episode we talk with Randy Borman, a respected leader among the Cofán indigenous people of Ecuador. Randy was born at the headwaters of the Amazon; he grew up among the Cofán people, speaking their language and living life in the forest as any young Cofán does. He also learned American culture from his missionary parents, and later pursued a Western university education before returning to his home and his people in Ecuador. Today, Randy is a respected leader among the Cofán, and is also well-known internationally among global environmental advocates. In our conversation we talk about indigenous worldviews, the unseen world, protecting the rain forest as a defense against climate change, and the need for a global cooperative approach to earthkeeping.
ENCOUNTERING GOD IN NATURE: VICTORIA LOORZ AND WILD CHURCHES
Forrest Inslee and James Amadon talk with Victoria Loorz, founder of the Wild Church Network, a broad association of religious communities that practice faith life in ways that foster connectedness to all of creation. A key practice of a wild church is holding some or all of their community gatherings in the outdoors, encouraging and guiding people to sense God’s presence in the natural world. You might recall from episode 6 that an essential indigenous value is seeking to be a “good relative” among all the myriad beings that make up the family of creation. In a similar way, Wild Churches seek to cultivate this dynamic of relationship that they call “KIN-dom”.
RECONCILING - TO THE LAND AND ONE ANOTHER - CHRISTI RENAUD AND PLANT WITH PURPOSE
In this episode we talk with Christi Renaud, Director of Marketing and Development for Plant with Purpose, which works with impoverished communities around the world to build strong local economies by encouraging good agriculture and financial management practices. Plant with Purpose is set apart from many other international development agencies through their emphasis on ecology and environmental health. Join us as we discuss the importance of local knowledge in community development, the connections between environmental justice and social justice, and creation care’s rootedness in yearning for God.
IN KINSHIP WITH CREATION: AN INDIGENOUS WORLDVIEW, WITH LENORE THREE STARS
Lenore Three Stars is a member of the board for Circlewood—the larger creation care community to which Earthkeepers belongs. As a member of the Lakota people, Lenore helps us to understand and embrace elements of an indigenous world view. In this episode we discuss a kinship model of creation care, as a corrective to a Western worldview that views people as separate from, and dominant over, creation.
WHERE SPIRITUALITY AND SCIENCE MEET
In this episode we talk to Leah Kostamo about her work at the Brooksdale Environmental Center in Surrey, British Colombia, and how she helps people understand the spirituality, as well as the science, of creation care. We also touch on themes of hospitality, children and nature, spiritual practices, our "ecological footprint," and environmental science.
URBAN FARMING AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE
In this episode we talk to Matt Ryan, an urban farmer in Chicago whose makes it his mission to educate the community about the social and environmental justice dynamics of growing food. The conversation includes crucial topics such as the intimacy of a farmer’s relationship to the land; the sustainability of small-scale farming; urban and backyard farming; the global food supply chain; and winter gardening.
GARDENS, COMMUNITY, AND GOD-PRESENCE
In this episode, contemplative author and gardener Christine Aroney-Sine offers a perspective from the Global South, in particular from her native Australia. She shares her thoughts about the connection between gardening and community, and explains lectio tierra--the practice of sensing the presence of God in nature. We speak as well about the ways in which all of these things found expression in ancient Celtic traditions--an historical European indigenous worldview that is finding new relevance today among people who care about community development and creation care.
SOCIAL JUSTICE IN AN URBAN COMMUNITY GARDEN
In this episode Tahmina Martelly of World Relief explains the connections between social and environmental justice, and how they play out in her work with immigrants and refugees. The community garden that they have built together has become a center for multicultural community, where people celebrate ethnic, cultural, economic, and religious diversity. Tahmina also addresses resistance among some Christians to matters of global warming and climate change, and challenges us to think about the sort of grace it takes to model a different approach to creation care.
EARTH CARE AND SPIRITUALITY
In this episode Forrest Inslee, Earthkeepers Podcast host, and James Amadon, Executive Director of Circlewood, talk about what the podcast is about, and what to expect in future episodes. Both tell their stories of how they sense and understand God in nature, and how creation care eventually became a core element of their respective callings. They speak of the need for community among people who believe that earth care is connected to spiritual practice. Only by finding support in one and other, and by learning in global community from a diversity of perspectives, can ecologically-minded people begin to shape a movement--a movement to combat climate change, to mobilize for environmental restoration, to advocate for environmental justice, and to restore right relationship between people and the rest of creation of which they are a part.