by Rabbi Katy Z. Allen
This past Sunday, over 100 members of the Jewish community, from New Bedford, MA to Brattleboro, VT, gathered at Hebrew College in Newton, MA, for the first Jewish Climate Action Network conference, “From Uncertainty to Action: What You Can Do About Climate Change.” According to Rabbi Arthur Waskow, it was the first conference of its kind, “I would have heard about it,” he told us, if there had been another.
For four hours, we learned together, sang together, talked together, and connected to each other. And through all this, we were inspired, motivated, and recharged. It was an amazing afternoon. I am grateful to all those who helped make it happen, and to all those who took the time and energy to come. It was a vision fulfilled; it was a start, not and ending. It was a new beginning, of putting the Boston area Jewish community into the conversation about climate change.
As Jews, we are deeply rooted in Torah and in community. Today, we brought these together in the context of climate change. The power of that connection was felt by every one present.
We will go forward from here, together. We will grow stronger. We will become more connected. We will build community. We will build enthusiasm and determination. We will weave networks of interdependence, caring, compassion, and trust. We will speak out. We will bring about change.
We will make a difference.
Rabbi Katy Allen is a board certified chaplain and serves as a Nature Chaplain and the Facilitator of One Earth Collaborative, a program of Open Spirit. She is the founder and rabbi of Ma’yan Tikvah – A Wellspring of Hope, which holds services outdoors all year long. She is a co-convener and coordinator of the Boston-based Jewish Climate Action Network.