Saturday, 20 December 2008

Renewal - multifaith earthcare videos

Renewal by Terry Ostrow and Terry Kay Rockefeller, is a 90-minute, documentary on US faith communities -- Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists -- who are tackling environmental problems. The film/DVD is being distributed across the USA by Interfaith Power and Light.

A number of Renewal clips may be viewed on Youtube. The Prophet Mohammed "told us that we should be kind to the animals, treat them with respect, treat them with dignity," says Shireen Pishdadi of the Taqwa food project in Chicago (shown above). Evangelical Christians in Appalachia protest entire mountaintops removed by coal mining operations. GreenFaith in NJ shows churches how to green and recycle; their minister says, "You can start with only 4 or 5 people". "God created not just humankind... but the entire created order, with love and with a purpose." Other clips show Eco-justice in New Orleans, children's trust walks, an Apache/Christian sacred celebration, the Buddhist Green Sangha, and IPL activists.

Ostrow and Rockefeller's film credits include two segments of PBS Race to Save the Planet (1990), and many science programs. She made On Common Ground: America's Religious Diversity (60 min, 2008, available online). He has filmed eco-theologian Thomas Berry, a catholic priest who draws on Eastern and Western spiritual traditions in Thomas Berry Speaks (2006), and for Renewal drew on the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology (FORE)'s case studies of environmental activism by religious communities.

See also FORE's video resource list, Humane Society of the US video All Creatures Great and Small (2008), Bill Moyer's "Is God Green" on changing attitudes of conservative evangelicals (2006), Interfaith Power and Light's own videos Preaching for the Planet: Interfaith Messages on Global Warming, and Lighten Up!: A Religious Response to Global Warming.

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