Lament with Earth

Five seasonal events honoring the pain of loss through the liturgical year

This event series is free, but contributions will be gratefully received to support The BTS Center's ongoing eco-grief programming.

“We know and feel in our bones that something primal is amiss. Our extended home is being eroded. It is essential that we stop and recognize these respond with sorrow, outrage and apology at these places touched by so much loss.”
— Francis Weller

So many of us know this truth voiced by Francis Weller. And yet, we have so few opportunities to express our sorrow, fear, sadness and yes, even despair about a future of life in a climate-changed world. It takes courage to touch the places inside ourselves where these truths live — those thoughts and feelings that likely keep many of us up at night, but are too often held inside us, in a space both alone, and lonely.

To create space for these feelings, The BTS Center — together with The Many, an extraordinary group of songwriters, spoken word artists and liturgists — has created Lament with Earth — five seasonal events featuring original music, poetry, rituals, images, scripture and videos to reflect different seasons of loss through the liturgical year. These events are interactive, inviting you to pray and sing along. You are  invited to bring your own sense of loss and sadness. We lament together, and also share that which has been a balm to our grief, strengthening us for the work we know awaits us.  

Upcoming Lament with Earth Events

Next Event:
Thursday, April 20, 2023 • 7:30 - 8:30 pm (Eastern)
Spring Event: Via Transformativa, with the Element of Water

The shattered water made a misty din.
Great waves looked over others coming in,
And thought of doing something to the shore
That water never did to land before.
— Robert Frost, Once by the Pacific

Spring in the northern hemisphere is filled with holidays that draw us into the forces of transformation: the resurrection of Easter, the liberation of Passover, and Beltane, the ancient springtime festival of optimism and fertility. In Matthew Fox's words, "these are the prophetic moments in our lives when we are called to use our talents and gifts with the hurting, fractured, dysfunctional aspects of our society." What better element to guide us through the themes of transformation than water, itself a shape-shifter? Water, in all its varied forms, stirs our imaginations even as it gives — and takes away — life. Water is intimately connected to our climate-changed world — as storm and drought, as acidification of the ocean and rain, as sea level rise and rising saline levels of fresh water sources. And, water moves turbines, grows food hydroponically, cools desert-like air, and bears life into the future.  

Together, we lament, and celebrate, the transformative power of water, holding space for mourning and discovery, sorrow and inspiration.

Following Event:
Thursday, June 22, 2023 • 7:30 - 8:30 pm (Eastern)
The Season of Via Positiva, featuring All Beings

View all upcoming and past Lament Earth events here


Creation Care Alliance

The Creation Care Alliance of Western North Carolina (CCAWNC) is a network of people of faith and congregations who have united around a moral and spiritual call to preserve the integrity, beauty and health of God’s creation. They bring practical and hopeful solutions to  congregations and broader secular communities by engaging hearts and minds through inspiration, education, service, and advocacy. Their work is an expression of love of God and God’s love for the earth and all life.

The BTS Center

With roots dating back to 1814, The BTS Center is a private foundation in Portland, Maine, building on the legacy of the former Bangor Theological Seminary. Today The BTS Center seeks to catalyze spiritual imagination, with enduring wisdom, for transformative faith leadership by offering theologically grounded programs of continuing education and spiritual formation, including workshops and retreats, learning cohorts, public conversations, and projects of applied research, all focused around spiritual leadership in a climate-changed world.

Event Partners

The Many

The Many
is "an uncommon, intentionally diverse collective making music for people to sing together about peace and justice and a world where all belong."
Drawing on indie pop and gospel influences, The Many makes music to help give voice to faith and doubt, questions and fears, laments and longings, music that speaks to a non-violent God, a Jesus who is with us and for us, and to a Spirit that can't be easily defined or controlled. It's music for a movement of resistance to hatred and division, for reconciliation and restoration, and music that always reminds us "we are on this earth to love." 

The Many are equally at home at a house concert, festival, conference or a faith-and-justice-grounded gathering of any kind. They do more than simply concerts — they create experiences in which they weave together music, words, images and liturgy into an engaging, participatory, transformational event.  

Learn more about The Many here.