Archives For Fred Bahnson

 

Fred Bahnson responds...Our new print issue features two reviews of

Making Peace with the Land: God’s Call to Reconcile with Creation.

(Resources for Reconciliation Series)

Norman Wirzba and Fred Bahnson.

Paperback: IVP, 2012.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]

Chris Smith’s appreciative review is available only in the print magazine.
Brent Aldrich’s semi-critical review (click here to read – PDF) challenges us with the question of how our eschatology shapes the ways in which we pursue reconciliation with the land.

We gave Fred Bahnson the opportunity to respond to Aldrich’s review and he was kind enough to do so…

In response to Brent Aldrich’s review of our book Making Peace With the Land, I wish to clarify what I believe are some fundamental misunderstandings and elisions on the part of the reviewer.

Mr. Aldrich’s main bone to pick, it seems to me, is his claim that our book exhibits an “overly-ruralized eschatology.” I think this is a mistaken accusation. First of all, the examples I wrote about were explicitly chosen to show how we might reconcile with the land in variety of places, both rural and urban. From the deserts of the Sahel to church gardens to a suburban farm (ECHO, just North of Ft. Lauderdale) to inner city Curitiba, a city of 2.1 million people, I tried to present the full spectrum of possibilities even in such a short book.

Despite the wide spectrum presented, Mr. Aldrich accuses us of a rural bias, which he dismissively calls “pastoral,” bemoaning that we don’t give enough attention to cities. If a city of 2.1 million people isn’t urban enough for him, then there’s not much I can say about that. But regardless, he is correct to say that we do focus more on making peace with rural land rather than urban land, and that’s not so much a bias as it is a declaration of an ecological reality: cities depend on the countryside much more than the other way around.

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As our Advent gift to you, we will be uploading the audio recordings from the main sessions of the “A Rooted People: Church, Place and Agriculture in an Urban World” conference. (Click here for the conference website and more info on the conference).

Click for previous installments in this series:
[ Part #1 – Ragan Sutterfield / Fred Bahnson ]
[ Part #2 – Martin Price / Sean Gladding ]
[ Part #3 – Claudio Oliver / Martin Price ]

Talk #7 –Saturday  Afternoon Keynote.
“The 2050 Scenario—Peak Oil, Peak Food, Peak… Church?” – Fred Bahnson
Fred is a writer and co-founder of Anathoth Community Garden.

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As our Advent gift to you, we will be uploading the audio recordings from the main sessions of the “A Rooted People: Church, Place and Agriculture in an Urban World” conference.  (Click here for the conference website and more info on the conference).

Talk #1 – Opening Session
“Humility” – Ragan Sutterfield

Ragan is a farmer and writer from Little Rock Arkansas, and author of  Farming as A Spiritual Discipline (Click here for our review…)

Talk #2 – Keynote Talk
“Lords, Priests, and Lovers (or Three Ways to Become a Master Gardener)”
– Fred Bahnson

Fred is a writer and co-founder of Anathoth Community Garden

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A   Rooted People - Conference

***** REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN *****

A Rooted People:
Church, Place and Agriculture
in an Urban World

Registration and more info:  http://englewoodcc.com/rooted/

Spread the word with the Facebook e-vite


Ours is a world in which transportation is becoming extremely costly (as was highlighted by the massive costs of the BP Oil Spill) and yet at the same time is a world that is becoming increasingly urban. Common sense would seem to indicate that these trends will impact in a major way our food systems and the way we eat. Given these factors, what is the church’s redemptive role in caring for the health and wholeness (shalom) of not just humanity, but all creation? Englewood Christian Church has invited several speakers with rich experiences in sustainable agriculture to lead a conversation reflecting on this question and related ones about church, place, food, community and agriculture, and we invite you to join us.

Speakers:
* Fred Bahnson: Writer and Co-founder of Anathoth Community Garden
* Martin Price:
Former Director of Educational Concerns For Hunger Organization (ECHO)

* Ragan Sutterfield:
Arkansas Farmer/Writer, Author of FARMING AS A SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE

Workshops Lead By :   Main speakers and others TBA

When: Friday Oct. 29 and Saturday Oct. 30, 2010

Where: Englewood Christian Church / Indianapolis

 

“Living the Incarnation”

A Review of
Wendell Berry and Religion:
Heaven’s Earthly Life

Edited by
Joel James Shuman and L. Roger Owens.

Reviewed by Ragan Sutterfield.

Wendell Berry and Religion:
Heaven’s Earthly Life
.
Edited by Joel James Shuman and L. Roger Owens.

Hardback: University Press of Kentucky,  2009.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]

Wendell Berry and ReligionWendell Berry has been in the news a lot these days from his visit to Washington with fellow agrarian agitators to Michael Pollan’s homage to Berry in The Nation’s food issue.  This attention is very good on the one hand, it is certainly a welcome development that more people are reading Berry and heeding his call to eat locally, but there is certainly cause to worry about this new attention.  The worry is that Berry will be painted, as many have already done, as a “father of the local food movement”—a key voice in a big trend.  Berry has written some of the best critiques of the industrial agricultural system and he has certainly advocated eating local food grown by farmers one knows, but Berry, as a thinker and writer, is concerned with problems and ways of living much bigger than any movement (a reduction he himself critiqued in his essay “In Distrust of Movements”).  It would be a tragedy if Berry’s legacy were to be left to the advocates of local food alone.

Thankfully we don’t need to worry too much about such a reduction because Joel Shuman and Roger Owens have put together a varied and deep collection of essays that engage Berry with the full complexity and breadth his work requires.  Wendell Berry and Religion: Heaven’s Earthly Life has been a long time in the making and it is a book that is still unfinished.  That’s a good thing, because as Joel Shuman writes in the introduction, this book represents “contributions to an ongoing conversation” with Berry’s work—a conversation “among a particular group of persons, over time and in a particular place.”  Such a conversation can never hope to be finished, only interrupted and picked up again—but here we have a very good beginning.

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