On April 22, 2012, seminary leaders from across the country gathered in Washington, D.C. at the National Cathedral to sign the Seminary Stewardship Alliance covenant. After a sermon from Blessed Earth co-founder Matthew Sleeth, the SSA was launched as the seminary representatives were called forward to sign the covenant. In doing so, they agreed to teach, preach, live, inspire, and hold each other accountable for good stewardship practices.
Matthew Sleeth shakes hands with Dr. Thomas Tumblin of Asbury Theological Seminary.
Matthew greets Dr. Pamela Cooper-White of Columbia Theological Seminary as she prepares to sign the covenant.
Dr. Charles Conniry represented George Fox Theological Seminary.
Dr. Charles Conniry (George Fox Theological Seminary), Dr. Lallene Rector (Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary), Dr. Mark Young (Denver Seminary), Dr. Pamela Cooper-White (Columbia Theological Seminary), Dr. Thomas Tumblin (Asbury Theological Seminary), and Will Samson (Director of Advancement, Blessed Earth)
Dennis Hollinger (Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) signs the covenant.
The Reverend Michael Cooper-White (Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg), Dr. Michael DeLashmutt (Luther Seminary), Dr. Charles Conniry (George Fox Evangelical Seminary), Dr. Lallene Rector (Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary), Dr. Mark Young (Denver Seminary), Dr. Thomas Tumblin (Asbury Theological Seminary), and Will Samson (Director of Advancement, Blessed Earth) bow their heads as Dr. Pamela Cooper-White closes in prayer.
The seminary representatives, listening to Matthew Sleeth’s Earth Day sermon at the National Cathedral.
Dr. Pamela Cooper-White’s closing prayer reflected the hopes of each of the signers, as well as the Blessed Earth and SSA staff:
“O God, our creator and maker:
In your infinite goodness you have created us,
sustained us, loved us, and blessed us-
elephant and flea, shark and sparrow,
primeval fern, mighty oak, and what that is the staff of life.
We thank you for bringing us together this day,
from many different places and traditions,
to commit ourselves before you and one another
to this covenant of preaching, teaching, modeling and accountability
for good stewardship of the earth you have given into our care.
Forgive us for those times and places
where we have been heedless of your call
to cherish and tend your creatures!
Heal the earth from the harm we have caused,
and heal our awareness!
Stir us up, that this Alliance may be more than words on paper,
but a true and living covenant of action and mutual encouragement,
So that by the power of your unceasing love,
we may be strengthened for the living into your Shalom-
your reign of peace and justice-
for the restoration of the earth, your own creation;
Through our Savior Jesus Christ.