Pope Francis, making his first trip to the United States since becoming the world leader of the Catholic Church, will address the the US Congress before visiting Philadelphia and New York City.
Dr. Currie, a long-time advocate for social justice, was invited by the White House earlier this month to join President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama in welcoming Pope Francis to the US.
“It is obviously a great honor to be able to attend this historic event,” said Dr. Currie, an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. “I have enormous respect for Pope Francis, his welcoming inclusion of all, and his work to bring about peace, economic equality and support for the environment. It is a special gift to be able to represent Pacific University at this gathering."
Prior to the ceremony, Currie will present, "The Unity and Disunity of the Church Universal," on Sunday, September 20 at Ainsworth United Church of Christ in Portland (2941 NE Ainsworth). The service begins at 10 a.m., and his sermon will focus on Pope Francis' visit to the US and where people of faith from different traditions can find common ground.
Pacific University’s Center for Peace and Spirituality provides students with the opportunity to engage in meaningful study, reflection and action based on the recognition that inter- and intra-personal peace are inherently connected and that concerns for personal spirituality are intimately related to concerns for one's social, historical, cultural and natural environment.
Founded in 1849, Pacific University offers more than 84 areas of study within its colleges of Arts & Sciences, Optometry, Education, Health Professions and Business.
Sarah Palin wants a cabinet position in any future Donald Trump administration. Specifically, she'd like to be secretary of the Department of Energy. The former half-term Alaska governor and 2008 GOP vice-presidential candidate said this week:
"I think a lot about the Department of Energy, because energy is my baby, oil and gas and minerals, those things that God has dumped on this part of the earth for mankind's use instead of us relying on unfriendly foreign nations, for us to import their ... resources."
Palin has long argued that the world's resources are a gift from God to be plundered. Climate change? Palin doesn't believe that humans could impact the climate. When world leaders gathered in Copenhagen in December 2009 to discuss ways to better protect the environment Palin famously tweeted:
Copenhgen=arrogance of man2think we can change nature's ways.MUST b good stewards of God's earth,but arrogant&naive2say man overpwers nature
"We are not God. The earth was here before us and it has been given to us. This allows us to respond to the charge that Judaeo-Christian thinking, on the basis of the Genesis account which grants man 'dominion' over the earth (cf. Gen 1:28), has encouraged the unbridled exploitation of nature by painting him as domineering and destructive by nature. This is not a correct interpretation of the Bible as understood by the Church. Although it is true that we Christians have at times incorrectly interpreted the Scriptures, nowadays we must forcefully reject the notion that our being created in God's image and given dominion over the earth justifies absolute domination over other creatures. The biblical texts are to be read in their context, with an appropriate hermeneutic, recognizing that they tell us to 'till and keep' the garden of the world (cf. Gen 2:15). 'Tilling' refers to cultivating, ploughing or working, while 'keeping' means caring, protecting, overseeing and preserving. This implies a relationship of mutual responsibility between human beings and nature."
People of faith, regardless of politics, need to be at the forefront of a world-wide movement that makes action on climate change not just politically possible but political suicide for those who would oppose such action. This is not about partisanship or party. We can and should applaud President Obama's overall climate change proposals, which move us in the right direction, but oppose President Obama when he takes such counter productive steps as allowing drilling for oil in the Arctic Ocean. Too many Democrats are timid on this issue while too many Republicans deny there is an issue to be concerned about.
We fail God if we do not respond to the crisis of climate change. After all, we created this crisis. The gift of creation is at stake. We leave for those who are younger a world in peril that will only become more dangerous and fractured over time without corrective action. All the people of the Earth have a responsibility to be - to borrow a term from the Hebrew Scriptures - restorers of the breach.
God did not "dump" the wonders of this planet on us to be exploited.
People of faith have a special responsibility here because we are charged by God to be stewards of creation and thus far we have failed to live out our responsibilities. Our sins will most certainly be visited on our children and their children. Still, action taken now to repent of those sins by doing whatever is necessary to restore the earth to the balance which God created would be a gift for future generations that would prove our worth as a species.
As for Palin:
"I think a lot about the Department of Energy. And if I were head of that, I'd get rid of it. And I'd let the states start having more control over the lands that are within their boundaries and the people who are affected by the developments within their states."
Views expressed here represent the perspectives of Rev. Currie, as well as reader participants, and may not represent the views of Pacific University, the United Church of Christ’s national offices in Cleveland or any local UCC congregation. External links made from this site should not construe an endorsement. Rev. Currie has no more editorial control over such content than does a public library, bookstore, or newsstand. Such external links are made for informational purposes only.