While keynoting at the Wake Forest University School of Divinity this fall, Dr. Sleeth was invited by a 3,500-member congregation in Winston-Salem to meet with their leadership team. Shortly after, the head of a 3,000 member NC Episcopal Parish asked to partner with Blessed Earth. Both churches will be studying Dr. Sleeth’s most recent book, 24/6, during Lent 2013. Dr. Sleeth will return to NC to speak to these congregations during the first and third weeks of March. Blessed Earth will also sponsor a pastor and lay leader lunch (hosted by Knollwood Baptist and Wake Forest) and breakfast (hosted by Centenary UMC) to share the vision for North Carolina CCY and build relationships with church partners.
In addition, Blessed Earth is sponsoring a Food and Faith Conference at Duke Divinity, September 26–28, 2013. Drawing together people of faith throughout North Carolina, this conference will share how we can put our faith into action three times a day by supporting local, sustainable agricultural practices.
Modeled on our partnership with The National Cathedral, Blessed Earth will work alongside twelve churches in North Carolina to share the biblical call to care for the earth. These church partnerships will include:
At least four sermons on creation care topics. Dr. Sleeth’s National Cathedral sermons as well as a wide range of sermon outlines will be provided as resources.
An invitation for Dr. Sleeth to speak at each of the partner churches. To maximize outreach, other members of the Blessed Earth staff will be available to lead workshops, classes, book discussions, and teen/young adult gatherings.
Small group studies formed around existing creation care curricula, including Serving God, Saving the Planet (two 6-week curricula) and 24/6 (a 4-week Lenten study).
Educational and community outreach, including guest lectures, sermons, workshops, panels, and retreats. In addition to speakers within their church and community, churches will be provided with suggestions for regional and national creation care speakers.
Pastor and lay leader retreat. Up to three church staff and lay leaders from each congregation will be invited to a retreat for staff education and renewal and on-going relationship building in North Carolina.
Blessed Earth has already begun preparing for the 2013– 14 North Carolina Creation Care Year. Visits include:
Oct 2012—Chapel and student/community events at Wake Forest University School of Divinity
Oct 2012—leadership meetings and events at Centenary UMC
Feb–March 2013—Lenten studies at major congregations in Winston-Salem
March 3, 2013—Dr. Sleeth preaching at Episcopal Parish in Winston-Salem
March 4, 2013—Pastor’s Lunch, hosted by Knollwood Baptist Church and Wake Forest
March 17, 2013—Dr. Sleeth preaching at Centenary UMC
March 18, 2013—Pastor’s Breakfast at Centenary UMC
April 14, 2013—Dr. Sleeth preaching at Front Street UMC in Burlington
September 26–28, 2013—Food and Faith Conference at Duke Divinity
Blessed Earth is in the process of planning additional 2013 visits and events to North Carolina as our relational networks grow and new doors open.
To check out a Lenten Devotional guide put together by Centenary UMC in Winston-Salem, click here.
Partnership Updates and Next Steps:
North Carolina Creation Care Year
- Oct 2012- Dr. Sleeth spoke at several events at Wake Forest University School of Divinity in Winston-Salem, NC
- Oct 2012- Leadership meetings and events at Centenary UMC in Winston-Salem, NC
- Feb–March 2013—Lenten studies at two major congregations in Winston-Salem, NC. One church, Centenary UMC, had ten small groups working through Blessed Earth curriculum
- March 3, 2013—Dr. Sleeth preached at Episcopal Parish in Winston-Salem
- March 4, 2013—Pastor’s Lunch, hosted by Knollwood Baptist Church and Wake Forest University School of Divinity in Winston-Salem
- March 17, 2013—Dr. Sleeth preached at Centenary UMC in Winston-Salem
- March 18, 2013—Pastor’s Breakfast at Centenary UMC in Winston-Salem, NC
- March 18, 2013- Afternoon forum with 20 Moravian clergy in Winston-Salem, NC
- March 18, 2013- Evening lecture at Front Street UMC in Burlington, NC
- April 10, 2013- Lecture at Duke Divinity Chapel in Durham, NC
- April 14, 2013- Dr. Sleeth preached at Front Street UMC in Burlington, NC
- August 12-14, 2013- Blessed Earth staff member to attend Duke Endowment Rural Church Convocation with clergy from across North Carolina
- August 14-15, 2013- The Sleeths will teach Wesleyan chaplains and their wives about Sabbath-keeping at a Wesleyan chaplain retreat at The Cove Camp in North Carolina.
- September 5, 2013- Dr. Sleeth to give keynote address at the Western North Carolina Alliance Annual Conference in Asheville, NC
- September 8-9, 2013- Dr. Sleeth to lead public evening event and then a morning clergy breakfast at First Baptist Church in Asheville, NC
- September 27-28, 2013- Blessed Earth to sponsor food and faith conference at Duke Divinity in Durham, NC
- October 6-7, 2013 – Blessed Earth staff to lead Moravian Church clergy on two day retreat
- March 18-19, 2014- Blessed Earth to lead retreat for NC Episcopal clergy
- April 25-27, 2014- Blessed Earth to lead three-day clergy retreat for Yadkin Valley District UMC clergy
- August 11-13, 2014- Sleeths to lead workshops at The Duke Endowment Rural Church Convocation for North and South Carolina Clergy
- October 31-November 1, 2014- Dr. Sleeth to lecture and participate in a panel discussion at the Creation Care Symposium in Wake Forest, NC