When we witness the relentless onslaught of extreme weather in Kenya, we’re tempted to wonder about how to hang on to hope. The deck looks impossibly stacked against Kenyans for whom drought, flooding and changing disease and pest vectors are spreading hunger and poverty.
But in the last few days, we’ve seen some examples of amazing resiliency and initiative. Community self-help organizations are terracing hillside fields to conserve water and prevent erosion. They are adopting Farming God’s Way, a gospel-based form of conservation agriculture that enhances soil health and conserves moisture. They are planting indigenous trees in many places to restore ecosystems and resist desertification. They are building remarkable sand dams, which turn seasonally-dry rivers into year-round water sources, and raise the water table. Continue reading
We creation care advocates, we’re pretty sure of ourselves, aren’t we? Let’s face it. We’ve listened to the National Academy of Sciences. We’ve read the research on global changes. We know all the “parts-per-million” data. We’ve seen the melting glaciers, and the shrinking ice cover. We know about sea levels, ocean acidification, and runaway species extinctions.
But let’s face it: most people out there aren’t nearly as alarmed as we’re pretty sure they ought to be. After all, some say, scientists have been wrong before, no?
Then we talk to field workers on the ground, as we did yesterday in Nairobi. World Renew leaders in Kenya told us story after story of escalating climate shocks and related human suffering. It’s pretty credible stuff, and deeply alarming. But still, NGOs are in the crisis business, aren’t they? Maybe they’re dressing things up a bit for the visitors from North America?
So today, we got a totally different perspective, and I hope you’ll stick around to hear it. We took a long, muddy bus ride to one of the 300 churches in the Mount Kenya South Diocese of the Anglican Church here. Where I come from, Anglican churches are all granite and stained glass. This one, home to a rural Kikuyu congregation, let the daylight shine in through plastic panels in a rusted tin roof. It was pretty humble, to my Western eyes. But I thought it was a perfectly lovely place. Continue reading