This past week I spent three days with an old high school chum–actually a lot of old high school chums–but this post is about one in particular. We were both attending a Passionist Assembly focusing on Laudato Si coordinated by Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim. the directors for the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale. Mary Evelyn and John were students of one of my favorite Passionists, Fr. Thomas Berry. They actually met in one of his classes at Fordham University, got married and now spend their lives sharing the New Story, The Dream of the Earth. It’s a fascinating story filled with lots of hope and an actual plan of action for the earth into the future.
In the discussion that followed one of Mary Evelyn and John’s presentations, my high school chum challenged: “This earth stuff is all well and good, but how does that answer the question of how we feed the 7 plus billion people who get up hungry every morning?” (talk about being practical!) I don’t think Bill, the questioner ever got a satisfactory answer.
Andrew Youn does claim to have a part of the answer in his amazingly understandable and enlightening February 2016 Ted Talk “3 Reasons why we can win the fight against poverty. He answers a question I’ve been mulling over for quite sometime now, what will be the jobs in the future. He says they will be four:
- Health worker
- Sales agent
He also talks about using levers, a trick taught to us by Archimedes of ancient Greece. He mentions three levers:
- Making farmers more productive
- Pulling farmers out of poverty
- One-acre farms
That last one really fascinates me, almost to the point I think I’d like to try it. Anyone interested?
Dan O’Donnell, a layman has covenanted with the Chicago Community. In addition to the standard covenant, Dan promises to work at connecting all partners known and unknown, to a conscious following the the way of Jesus, the way of the cross which Dan believe transforms all failure, democratizing the human journey
We are a community of laymen and laywomen who, with vowed Passionists, seek to share in the charism of St. Paul of the Cross through prayer, ongoing spiritual formation, and proclamation of the message of Christ Crucified.
2 thoughts on “Can We Feed 7-plus Billion and Be Green?”
I always enjoy your good writing & thoughts, Dan. We’ve had gardens for years, some fairly large but never close to an acre. (sigh) Now, due to age & health limitations, we “patio garden” using buckets tomatoes, squash, celery, Basque sweet & hot peppers, bell peppers, & several herbs this year with a side of peach, cherry, & pear dwarf trees. This year we added several flowers that are favorites to bees & humming birds. “Green thumbs” not required; anyone can garden even if body “elasticity” limits normal tasks. One bucket can be a good beginning to build one’s confidence.
I remember as a small child seeing “Victory Gardens” during WW 2. Perhaps a similar concept to the “one Acre” solution.