Center Overview

The Center for Climate Justice and Faith empowers leaders to cultivate moral, spiritual, and practical power for the work of climate justice in communities of faith and in collaboration with others.

The Center is an initiative of Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary, a graduate school of California Lutheran University and a member of the Graduate Theological Union.

Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary has long been on the forefront of linking faith in Jesus Christ to the quest of social justice. Today, environmental degradation — and in particular climate change — is a ferocious engine of racial injustice and economic injustice. The people ravaged or killed by climate change (who will measure in the hundreds of millions) are and will be disproportionality people of color and economically impoverished people, while those who cause climate change are primarily the world’s high consumers. “Climate justice,” thus, weds efforts to address climate change with efforts toward racial and economic justice.

Our moment in time is breathtaking… pivotal. Today’s adults and young adults will determine whether climate catastrophe in its worst forms will be averted. Lutherans claim that God created a world that is tov (Hebrew word translated as “good” in Genesis, but more specifically a good that is life-generating).  Yet the world’s high consuming people now threaten that very tov, Earth’s capacity to generate and re-generate life.  We have become the “un-creators.” In this context, the Center prepares leaders for the work of climate justice as faith active in Earth-honoring, justice-seeking neighbor-love.

Founder’s Day – Lisa Dahill

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The Center’s Programmatic Branches: {Link to program pages}

  • Certification as a Green-Justice seminary – certification earned in five areas of seminary life:
  • Concentration in Climate Justice and Faith (for M.Div. and MA. students) 
  • Curricular innovations
  • Certificate in Climate Justice and Faith (serving the global Lutheran communion; for non-degree participants) in collaboration with: Lutherans Restoring Creation and Lutheran World Federation
  • Course/training: Community Organizing for Climate Justice as Love in Action (for non-degree participants) in collaboration with: GreenFaith, Organizing for Mission Network of the ELCA, and ELCA World Hunger

The Center’s Roots:

  • God’s liberating healing love at work in the world.
  • The Spirit-led, Gospel-grounded, truth-telling, courageous impulse of re-formation at the heart of Lutheranism.

The Center’s Sustenance:
A tree cannot exist and bear fruit without, water, sunshine, soil, and love. 

  • Donors whose values, hopes, and intentions align with this Center, and who enable it to thrive, and bear rich fruit   
  • Circle of Partner Congregations and Synods
  • Granting organizations

The Center’s Sustenance:
A tree cannot exist and bear fruit without, water, sunshine, soil, and love. 

  • Donors whose values, hopes, and intentions align with this Center, and who enable it to thrive, and bear rich fruit   
  • Circle of Partner Congregations and Synods
  • Granting organizations
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