Forgive me fodder, for I have trimmed.
Students at Union Theological Seminary prayed to a display of plants set up in the chapel of the school, prompting the institution to issue a statement explaining the practice as many on social media mocked them.
“Today in chapel, we confessed to plants,” the nation’s oldest independent seminary declared Tuesday on Twitter. “Together, we held our grief, joy, regret, hope, guilt and sorrow in prayer; offering them to the beings who sustain us but whose gift we too often fail to honor. What do you confess to the plants in your life?”
The ceremony, which is part of professor Claudio Carvalhaes’ class “Extractivism: A Ritual/Liturgical Response,” drew ridicule from many on Twitter, some of whom accused the seminary and students of having lost their minds.
“We’ve had many questions about yesterday’s chapel,” the statement read in part. “In worship, our community confessed the harm we’ve done to plants, speaking directly in repentance. This is a beautiful ritual.”
“We are in the throes of a climate emergency, a crisis created by humanity’s arrogance, our disregard for Creation,” the statement continued. “Far too often, we see the natural world only as resources to be extracted for our use, not divinely created in their own right—worthy of honor, thanks and care. We need to unlearn habits of sin and death. And part of that work must be building new bridges to the natural world. And that means creating new spiritual and intellectual frameworks by which we understand and relate to the plants and animals with whom we share the planet.”
h/t offend an oleander, go to h***