Engaging the Climate Crisis

Multnomah Falls, pictured, is a west coast treasure located at the borders of Washington and Oregon states. This year it was one of many treasures and communities threatened or decimated by wildfires that raged from Alaska to California and across the American west. Wildfireswith the accompanying thick summer smokeare a direct consequence of climate change.

Climate Change may be a global issue, but it has real and devastating impacts to local communities. For clergy, pastors/ministers and people of faith, as they see their communities effected, there is a realization that climate change is not simply a civics or economic question, it is a moral one. People of faith increasingly recognize the moral imperative that we must step up to protect our next generations and our sacred earth. This task cannot wait. The imperative is now.

Our application date has passed, but we still have a few spots left! If you are interested, please apply. We'd love to fill our slate!

Details below. Read the press release

See and share our facebook event.

Read the article on the PNW Blog Engaging the Climate Crisis, a Training for Times Like These. 

Scroll down for logistics, presenters list, and conference agenda.

training Details

Our focus for the training is to offer faith leaders and people of faith the opportunity to network, learn how to best support their communities and congregations, and process the hope and grief of climate work in a sacred sanctuary space. Ashland is a natural welcoming sanctuary space. We will address climate from a number of social perspectives as well as  looking at how to tell the climate story. See below for a list of some of our presenters.

Who can apply? This ecumenical event is open to clergy and ministry leaders who lead congregations and/or extension ministries and want to know more about climate and how climate work intersects with the local church. Please apply here. Our application date has passed, but there are still a few spots left! If you are interested, please apply. We would love to fill our slate!


Space is limited To apply, please email csninfo@climatereality.com for an application link or apply directly here. Your submitted application will be followed up with a phone call. For questions and more information, contact Rev. Richenda Fairhurst, pastorrichenda@gmail.com

The history of this training—The idea for this training follows the success of the Ministers’ Trainings at the Center for Earth Ethics at Union Seminary, in New York City. The opportunity to collaborate with the Climate Speakers Network to bring a similar training to the west coast seemed clear and timely. 

When, Where, and How Much?

Where—The training is located in beautiful Ashland, Oregon, at the Ashland First United Methodist Church (175 N. Main Street, Ashland, OR, 97520). The Church is walking distance from hotels, parks and restaurants. Ashland, Oregon, has easy accessibility along the I-5 by car, and is connected by direct flights into Medford Airport from a number of major cities in the west. 

WhenThe training is three full days, from May 1st to May 3rd. Registration begins at 10:00am, we ask you please to come on time as we will begin and end the training with a ceremonial Peacemaking Circle. 

Costs—The training is FREE, and includes most meals, however, attendees will need to pay for their own lodging and travel as well as any meals not provided and taken off campus. We have a limited number of rooms with special rates, contact pastorrichenda@gmail.com for info on those.

Lodging—Special group discounts are available within walking distance of the church and downtown plaza, but space is limited and must be reserved by the first week of April. Upon acceptance of your application, we will provide further details on lodging.

Accessibility—The Ashland United Methodist Church is fully wheelchair accessible.   


 (Subject to change)


Tuesday, May 1

                                    Breakfast on you own.

10:00am                      Welcome! Registration and Opening Prayer

Morning Session:        Greeting, healing, and Peacemaking Circle led by Rev. Terri Stewart

12:30pm                      Networking Lunch

Afternoon Sessions:   Climate Speaker’s Network/Climate Reality Presentation, led by Karla Bollier and Jill Leaness.

                                  Rally Songs for people of faith, led by Jennifer Schlomming

6:00pm                       Community Dinner

Evening Session:        Healing Circle with Holy Communion led by Rev. Terri Stewart


Wednesday, May 2

                                    Breakfast on your own.         

8:30am                        Opening Worship and Rally Songs with Rev. Sharon Delgado and Jennifer Schlomming.

Morning Sessions:       Climate Science 101, how the Science works with Prof. Jamie Trammell followed by snacks and

                                     group workshopping, breakout sessions.

                                    Indigenous People’s Experience; Doctrine of Discovery and the Watershed. led by Coyote-Marie

                                    Hunter-Ripper and David West.

12:30pm                      Workshopping Lunch

Afternoon Sessions:    Panel discussion: Colonialism, Discovery and its impacts in the West, Q&A with David West, 

                                    Coyote-Marie, Marjorie Trueblood-Gamble, Karla Bollier.

                                    Preach it! Storytelling. How to tell the Climate story, led by Alison Carey, writer for the Oregon                                              Shakespeare Festival.

5:30pm                        Dinner on your own

Evening Session:         Theatre Presentation, An Incoherent Truth, A Muse Zoo of Ashland, Oregon.


Thursday, May 3

                                    Breakfast on your own

8:30am                        Opening Prayer

Morning Session:        Practice: Sharing and leading songs of justice and solidarity as a person of faith, led by Jennifer -


                                  Application: How organizing works. How to build movements and bring real change, including

                                  the environmental review process, the legislative process, and working as a person of faith

                                 with faith-based and secular organizers. These sessions led by Don and Alona Steinke, Diane

                                 Werich of Ashland Interfaith Coalition, Kathy Conway of SOCAN, Hannah Sohl of Rogue

                                 Climate, and Rev. Caren Caldwell.

                                   Practice: Two minutes of Testimony, how to use 2-3 minutes at public hearings to speak with

                                   authority and from the heart, led by Rev. Richenda Fairhurst

12:30pm                     Networking Lunch.

Afternoon Sessions:    Application & Practice: Public witness. What does it mean to attend a march or rally? What is a

                                   protest or action? What is a faithful or pastoral response to these and those who participate? We

                                   will explore these questions at this workshop.

                                    Healing and Peacemaking Circle, led by Rev. Terri Stewart

6:00pm                        Community Dinner

7:00pm                        Community Closing Worship, A Sacred Service of Prayer for the Creation with guest preacher, Rev. Sharon Delgado.


Presenter and Schedule Information may be subject to change.

  • Climate Speakers Network, a Climate Reality project, has teamed with the Ashland United Methodist Church to bring expert presenters together for a Climate Training intended to help clergy and those engaged in climate ministry better understand and better respond to the concerns raised by climate change.

  • Karla Bollier

    As the Climate Speakers Network Director, Karla Brollier heads up Climate Reality’s Climate Speakers Network team and intentions for the organization.

    Prior to joining the Climate Reality Project, her most recent role was the Environmental Justice Director for Alaska Wilderness League and the Deputy Director for the Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council. She has dedicated over 12 years advocating for climate change, environmental justice and indigenous rights on a local, national and international level. She began her career organizing environmentally focused non-profit programs, which developed into her dynamic background in non-profit management, directing campaigns, policy and advocacy work.

    Karla is an Ahtna Athabascan, an Indigenous born and raised in Alaska and obtain her degree in English literature and Philosophy, as well as her MBA. She serves as a Board Director for The Alaska Native Professional Association, the Chambers of Commerce Young Professionals and serves on the Executive Committee of the Institute of the North’s Lead:North. She is currently a Fellow for the First Alaskans Institute and the Governor appointee for the Natural Resources Conservation and Development Board.

    Karla Spends her free time reading, practicing yoga, rock and ice climbing, exploring the world and learning how to make our world a collectively better place.

  • Jill leaness

    Jill Leaness is the Manager for the Climate Speakers Network, a program of the Climate Reality Project. In this role, Jill collaborates with a diverse group of local, state, and national partners to develop solutions-based trainings to empower peer messengers working to connect climate change with their community. Prior to working at Climate Reality Jill served in the Peace Corps as a Community Environmental Conservation Volunteer in Panama, where she worked with a small mountain community to mitigate the impacts of climate change. She has also worked and interned with the National Park Service and various environmental nonprofit organizations across the United States. Jill holds a BS and an MS in environmental science. In her free time Jill can be found outside whether it be hiking, backpacking, running, or reading in her hammock! 

  • Alison carey

    ALISON CAREY is director of American Revolutions: the United States History Cycle, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s multi-decade program of commissioning and developing 37 new plays about moments of change in United States history, including Tony and Pulitzer winners and works that explore the history of the relationship between Americans and their environment. Carey is co-founder and former resident playwright of Cornerstone Theater Company, which creates work with and for communities across the United States. Her California: The Tempest explored the effects of climate change on the Golden State and her work has been produced at venues nationwide, including Arena Stage, the Public Theater, the Mark Taper Forum, the shuttered mother plant of Bethlehem Steel, and a dirt-floor cattle sale barn. She speaks nationally on the importance of the arts in promoting environmental justice and shaping healthy and equitable societies.

  • REv. Sharon Delgado

    The Reverend Sharon Delgado is a United Methodist preacher, writer, and activist from Northern California. She preaches, leads workshops, speaks and writes for spiritual communities and secular audiences on issues related to climate change, economic and environmental justice, peacemaking, and corporate globalization. Sharon is author of newly-released Love in a Time of Climate Change: Honoring Creation, Establishing Justice (Fortress Press). Fortress will release an updated Second Edition of her first book, Shaking the Gates of Hell: Faith-Led Resistance to Corporate Globalization, in the fall. Her blog is Progressive Christian Social Action at sharondelgado.org.   

  • Coyote Marie Hunter-Ripper

    Coyote Marie Hunter-Ripper is a Cherokee Traditional Practitioner. She is involved in United Methodist leadership boards, including the Committee on Race and Religion and Committee of Native American Ministries in the Pacific Northwest. She has traveled extensively as an ambassador of human rights, including to as part of the Grandmothers’ Council gathering Gisborne, New Zealand with the Maori; to Bangkok Thailand; to Lahore, Pakistan, by invitation of the U.S. Embassy; to Guatemala through Volunteers in Mission; and most recently to the Rohingya Refugee Camps in Bangladesh. At Standing Rock, among the 500 clergy who gathered in support of the Water is Life effort, hers was the ceremonial pot where the Doctrine of Discovery was burned in a prayer-filled ceremony. Her practice, NW-Wo-Ti Compass is based in Ashland, Oregon.

  • Jennifer Schloming

    Jennifer Schloming is active in the local social justice movements of the Rogue Valley and beyond. She has encouraged faith-based organizations to stand with Unete and the migrant community, and with the Muslim members of Masjid Al Tawheed, asking each church and synagogue to reckon with how to best support and protect members of our community who find themselves suddenly at risk. She brings her breadth of knowledge of music, music history, and the anthems of the church and liberation movements together with her faith to explore how the music of protest can be used to claim the moral voice in a time of moral urgency. Jennifer has served as music director, vocal coach and accompanist for Rogue Opera, Cabaret and Camelot Theaters and in-house projects at Oregon Shakespeare Festival, working extensively with young people at high schools and SOU. A member of Temple Emek Shalom, on Sundays, she is the music director for the First United Methodist Church of Ashland. Jennifer has degrees from Stanford University and Reed College, and served as staff accompanist at Pomona College, Princeton University, and as studio accompanist to the Fisher-Jones Opera Studio in Portland, OR. With Michael Mish, she is co-author of the book, Maya and the Gordian Knot.

  • Don & Alona Steinke

    Don and Alona Steinke are citizen organizers who have successfully defeated efforts by fossil fuel companies to expand fossil fuel infrastructure in Oregon and Washington State. Their efforts helped to turn out thousands of people for rallies, doorknocking, phonebanking, local elections, and testimony before civic boards at the city and state level. Over the last 7 years, they have achieved over 50 victories building a coalition to include the Sierra Club, Columbia Riverkeeper, labor unions, and Native Nations. This coalition and communication network has stopped new fossil fuel infrastructure proposed west of the Cascades, most recently the Tesoro effort, Vancouver Energy, which was slated to be the largest crude oil terminal in North America. They are currently leading campaigns to pressure local cities and school districts to adopt climate action plans and support a statewide carbon fee. Don Steinke is a science teacher and Alona Steinke is a registered nurse, both retired. They are members of the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Vancouver, Washington.

  • Rev. Terri Stewart

    Rev. Terri Stewart is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, appointed as a full time extension minister with the Church Council of Greater Seattle working with the Youth Chaplaincy Coalition for incarcerated youth. Their specialty includes the intersection of mass incarceration, mentoring, restorative justice, racism and our church community. In addition, Terri pioneered the ‘Bystander Training’ workshop offered to churches and communities across the Pacific Northwest. In their work, they seek to help others process systemic and personal trauma, as well as build cross-cultural awareness and healing through relationship, utilizing the Peacemaking Circle in the tradition of the Tagish T’lingit First Nations People of the Yukon province, as taught by Sareoum Phoung. They are also on the board of UMC PNW Reconciling Ministries and blogs at Beguine Again and The Bezine.

  • E. Jamie Trammell

    With degrees in biology, environmental studies, geography, and conservation biology, Jamie considers himself an interdisciplinary scientist with a landscape and conservation planning focus. He specializes in using various mapping technologies to translate, visualize, and describe landscape (ecological and social) change, in hopes of developing more proactive strategies to conserve natural resources. Much of his recent work has been focused on mapping the where of climate change to better communicate impacts to human and natural systems. He has lived and worked in the deserts of the southwest U.S., northern rivers of NSW, Australia, and throughout arctic and subarctic Alaska, before moving to Ashland to teach in the Environmental Science and Policy department at Southern Oregon University.

  • Marjorie Trueblood-Gamble

    Marjorie Trueblood-Gamble is the current Director of Diversity and Inclusion at SOU, working closely with various diverse campus programs, students and faculty. She is committed to social justice and inclusive communities and embodies these values in her work at Southern Oregon University. Professionally, Marjorie provides diversity and inclusion resources to the college community through trainings, thoughtful listening, policy creation, and programs that celebrate the unique differences various stakeholders bring. Marjorie seeks to meet people where they are at, through a calming and diplomatic approach.

  • David west

    David West MA is enrolled with the Citizen Potawatomi Nation with Miami, Kickapoo, French, and Dutch descendancies. He is Director Emeritus of Native American Programs at Southern Oregon University; Ashland, Oregon with the rank of Assistant Professor (retired). He is a co-founder and Director of the Konaway Nika Tillicum Native American Youth Academy, currently in its 24th year of operation. David is an ex-officio member of the Board for the Oregon Indian Education Association, a member of the Native American Advisory Board for Southern Oregon University, and is currently lecturing on the Sacredness, and relationship, of all Beings to Water. David is an Alumni of Rogue Community College, University of Oregon, and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He is the initial recipient and presenter of the David D. West Excellence In Diversity Annual Award for Rogue Community College. David is a strong advocate for Indigenous Environmental Education and will offer historical background, with contemporary perspectives, in an engaging and informal atmosphere on his journey to fulfill his educational vision and commitment to the protection of the watershed and stewardship of Mother Earth and All Our Relations. 

  • A muse zoo

    A Muse Zoo specializes in physical comedy and clowning as a way to engage big conversations. (See the poster for 'In Incoherent truth'!) They will bring an original production to the conference tackling the big story of Climate Change, challenging us though laughter, and inviting us to hear and see ourselves in the conversation. A Muse Zoo Theatre is an Ashland, OR based company dedicated to creating relevant and accessible theatre. Their intent is to challenge the complacency of the modern imagination through intellectual and interactive storytelling. Through minimalist theatrical style and physical comedy, they aim to inspire critical thinking, reflection and connection.

Engaging the Climate Crisis

A collaborative effort of Climate Speakers Network, a program of the Climate Reality Project, and the Ashland First United Methodist Church.

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