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  • The Journal of Lutheran Ethics

    Deliberation. Scholarship. Witness.

    March/April 2013

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    Editor’s Introduction
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    James Echols Care for Creation
    by James Kenneth Echols
    As a growing and strong consensus emerges in our world that climate change is endangering the planet, this issue of JLE focuses on the environment.
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    American Lutherans Engage Ecological Theology:
    The First Chapter, 1962-2012, And Its Legacy

    by H. Paul Santmire
    H. Paul Santmire entered the ecological theology arena early on and offers a walk-through of the “first chapter,” the field’s legacy from 1962 to the present. He focuses on Joseph Sittler and Larry Rasmussen as important players and highlights their influence throughout the paper.
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    Caring for Creation at 20
    by Roger A. Willer
    2013 marks the 20th anniversary of the ELCA social statement Caring for Creation: Vision, Hope, and Justice. Roger Willer, the ELCA’s director for theological ethics, provides an overview of the statement and its “sweeping moral vision,” calling fellow Lutherans to engage more actively in creation care, for “this is why God creates us.”
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    Consumption, Ethics and the Environment: a Lutheran Perspective
    by Laura M. Hartman
    In an interconnected world where the world “neighbor” becomes more and more ambiguous, how can one rise to Luther’s high standards of Christian neighbor-love? Laura Hartman uses the example of fair trade chocolate to explore the responsibility and practicality of making informed, love-driven consumption choices with the far-reached neighbor in mind.
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    Repentance and Ecological Vocation
    by Kiara Jorgenson
    As humans continue to attempt rivaling God, Kiara Jorgenson calls for repentance and a return to ecological servanthood. Jorgenson argues that cultivating the virtues of prudence, temperance, and fortitude will lead to right relationship with creation and a stronger grasp on restraint, resourcefulness, and contentedness.
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    Lutheran Theology and the Environment:
    Bonhoeffer, the Church, and the Climate Question

    by Jim Martin-Schramm
    Jim Martin-Schramm asks hard questions by drawing comparisons between the work of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the current climate crisis. He urges Lutherans to reexamine our responsibility to creation care and to question whether our current faith life “expects too little in terms of Christian discipleship in an era of rapid global climate change.”
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    Book Reviews
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    Earth-honoring Faith: Religious Ethics in a New Key
    review by Kim Winchell
    What Rasmussen unfolds in this book is a wider, deeper, and rich maturation, if you will, of those themes, questions, and yearnings that have obviously been with him for many years. As helpful as his seminal book Earth Community, Earth Ethics (1996) was, Earth-honoring Faith is even more so; and my hope is that it will be “accessible” for even more readers.
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    Ministry Among God’s Queer Folk
    review by Dan Hooper
    So much has changed since 2007. Of course we must see and use this important resource in the context of a rapidly changing society, where tectonic shifts keep occurring in attitudes about sexuality (and everything else) even as the need for sensitive, compassionate, competent, and well-informed pastoral care continues. For those who especially may feel they are not as well informed or adequately resourced to meet LGBTQ people with sensitivity, this is your handbook.
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    Parallel Lives of Jesus: A Guide to the Four Gospels
    review by Alec J. Lucas
    Edward Adams has written an excellent introduction to the canonical Gospels. His introduction is at once easy to understand and yet sophisticated in its methodology. Building upon the emerging scholarly consensus that the Gospels, in terms of genre, are best understood as ancient biographies, Adams advocates a narrative model as the best way to navigate the unity and diversity of these canonical texts.
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    © March/April 2013
    Journal of Lutheran Ethics
    Volume 13, Issue 2