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Ashes to ashes, stardust to stardust

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If you want a spiritual practice, look outside Lent. And not just on Sundays, and please, don’t light a candle. Also ask the donor of your ashes to mark you not just as ashes to ashes, dust to dust, but ashes to ashes, stardust to stardust.

You are going somewhere. You are about to become a star. Carl Sagan’s Cosmos lit us up by reminding us that everybody who ever was is already up there overhead, blinking. Spiritual practice is becoming a star, every day, and not just in Lent.

Black clergy seek to bridge ‘green’ gap

At Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, members and neighbors buy fruits and vegetables from a black farmers market and work in an organic garden named after botanist George Washington Carver.

They recycle their church bulletins, plan to renovate their building with a “green” roof and have purchased 27 acres for a community project that will include an urban farm.

“By any greens necessary,” the Rev. Otis Moss III, the church’s pastor, likes to say.

Young adults look to emulate St. Francis' bond with nature

On a recent Saturday, members of the local Franciscan Earth Corps stocked shelves and cleaned storage rooms at a food pantry. In early March, the group will screen “Triple Divide,” a documentary about hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Later this spring, they'll put up bluebird boxes at a retreat center.

And once a month, they'll gather to talk about Franciscan spirituality.

What words can do with nature

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Author Barry Lopez has an encyclopedia of geography. It includes an explanation of the gorge, the rim, the clearing and a thousand other descriptions of places and spaces and geos.

He gives a name tag to the land and its parts, but he’s hardly the only one engaged in such writing.

Amy Leach has written Things that Are. It is about reindeers, many of whom I have never met. Yes, whom.

Preach-in asks: Spend Valentine's Day loving creation

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Forget about the roses and chocolates this weekend. Instead, “make God your Valentine” urges the Rev. Sally Bingham, an Episcopal priest and president/founder of Interfaith Power and Light, based in San Francisco.

In a Feb. 2 homily, Bingham asks people to move beyond their personal selves for the three days, and flip the meaning of a commercially driven holiday filled with lacy greeting cards, posies and sweets by “doing something to restore our fragile island home.”

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In This Issue

September 12-25, 2014

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