2021 Interfaith Summit

2021 Virtual Interfaith Summit: Healing, Helping and Building Resilience

An Interfaith Summit on How to Respond

In the wake of the National Climate Assessment and UN report in 2018 on the projected serious consequences of unchecked climate change, interfaith leaders from the greater Boston area will come together with Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW) to host the third annual interfaith summit on vulnerability and climate change on the afternoon of April 11th, 2021 from 2pm-4pm on zoom. 

This now abbreviated digital summit will focus on the role of faith communities in helping their community members build resilience, whether from future climate impacts such as floods, extreme heat, and severe storms, or more immediate concerns like a pandemic. We will shall share knowledge on the types of changes we are already seeing and can expect to see in the Northeast, discuss practical ways congregations can prepare themselves and their surrounding community, and discern together how our spiritual practices could help sustain not only our efforts, but also our souls, hearts, and minds, as we engage in this most critical mission.

There will be an optional hour of networking from 4pm-5pm on the same zoom line that participants are encouraged but not mandated to attend.

Thank you to all who attended this year! A link to a recording of the virtual summit can be found HERE.

Interested in hosting a similar event in your area? Want to learn how your congregation can help the community prepare for climate impacts? Contact us!

Updated Agenda for digital participation

2:00pm-2:05pm Welcome, Rev. Vernon K. Walker, Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW)

2:05pm-2:15pm Land acknowledgement, Jean-Luc Pierite, North American Indian Center of Boston (NAICOB)

2:15pm-2:25pm Defining this year theme,  Dr. Tallessyn Zawn Grenfell-Lee

2:25pm-2:45pm Keynote Address, Rev. Jim Antal 

Breakout groups 

2:45pm-3:30pm Breakouts to Discussion of Cultural/Spiritual Approaches to

Healing Facilitators

Rabbi Katy Allen, President Pro Tem of Jewish Climate Action Network

Shua Khan Arshad, Founder & President of LUWS Academy LLC

Rev. Thomas Margrave, Team member of the Disaster Spiritual Care leadership at the Red Cross

Helping Facilitators 

Rev. Dr. Rodney Peterson, Executive Director of Cooperative Metropolitan Ministries 

Jean-Luc Pierite, President of the Board for North American Indian Center of Boston (NAICOB)

Evelyn Sullivan, Team member of the Disaster Services at the Red Cross

Building Resilience Facilitators

Rev. Annie Gonzalez MillikenMinister of Faith Development at First Parish in Bedford

Zenshin Greg FainZen Priest at San Francisco Zen Center

Rabbi Dr. Shira Stern, Team member of the Disaster Spiritual Care leadership at the Red Cross

3:30pm-3:40pm Breakout Group Report Backs and Reflections

3:40pm-3:50pm- Next Steps and Resources - 3 CREW team members, Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW)

3:50pm-4:00pm Closing Prayer, Rev. Dr. Robert Massie, Creating the World we Want

Keynote Speaker

Rev. Jim Antal is a denominational leader, climate activist, author and public theologian. Hundreds of churches are reading his 2018 book, CLIMATE CHURCH, CLIMATE WORLD. Jim is a graduate of Princeton University and Yale Divinity School. He has preached on climate change since 1988 in over 300 settings and has engaged in non-violent civil disobedience on numerous occasions. In 2018 he retired as the leader of the 350 UCC churches in Massachusetts. He currently serves as Special Advisor on Climate Justice to the General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ.




Please click the name of the participant in the program who's name is blue to learn more about them. 

Sponsors & Co-Hosts: