Passion of the Earth Project
Melanie Weidner collaborated with the Benedictine Sisters of the Monastery of Saint Gertrude between 2004 to 2006 to offer this illuminating presentation of the Passion of the Earth, a fresh telling of the Creation story. Using poetry and art, theology and science, we make new connections between Christian faith and humanity’s relationship with the Earth. In this crucial era of human and Earth history, the Passion of the Earth and the Benedictine way of life give spiritual help and hope for engaging the ecological challenges facing us all.
Art by Melanie Weidner and text by Sr Teresa Jackson, OSB, are installed in the Monastery’s Spirit Center retreat house in Cottonwood, Idaho, while the images in art prints and DVDs inspire people around the world.
From Author Sr Teresa Jackson, OSB, “The Passion of the Earth is designed to be a spiritual exercise that enables people to see the earth and the cosmos not only as God’s creation, but as the most basic expression of God’s very self. The earth and the cosmos are not inanimate objects for human beings to use, abuse, and destroy as they see fit, but a gift of God our creator to reverence and cherish. Humanity does not stand above creation as dominating caretakers, but rather we humans stand within its midst as one small part of the vast expression of the cosmos.
“As human beings, our self-reflective awareness gives to us special obligation to understand and respond to this gift of creation. As humanity has sought to dominate and indiscriminately use the resources of the earth, often in destructive ways, humanity now has an obligation to understand and heal our relationship with the earth.”
Deep thanks to Sr Teresa Jackson, Sr Meg Sass, and Kathy McFaul, and the Monastery of St Gertrude Community for inspiration and great trust. Thanks to Louise M Tritton and the Pendle Hill Ecology and the Soul weekend course, January 2004, and to Brian Swimme, Alexandra Kovatz, and Gail Worchelo for tremendous workshops at the NW Catholic Women’s Convocation in Seattle WA, April 2005. Finally, deep appreciation and a hearty recommendation for The Universe Story, by Brian Swimme and the late Thomas Berry.