In her thoughtful and thought-provoking book on Christian spirituality and the climate crisis, Refugia Faith: Seeking Hidden Shelters, Ordinary Wonders, and the Healing of the Earth, Debra Rienstra delves into how people of faith can fall in love again with our home planet and take our own small yet steady steps toward building a better world, not only for our fellow human beings but for the entire more-than-human world as well.
This discussion guide, created by author Debra Rienstra, offers guidance for deep engagement with the text for groups. We hope that, as The BTS Center integrates the themes of Refugia Faith more deeply into our programming, you will use this resource to explore the book with others in your congregation or community.
Debra is professor of English at Calvin University, where she has taught since 1996, specializing in early British literature and creative writing. She is the author of four books — on motherhood, spirituality, worship, and ecotheology/climate change — as well as numerous academic essays, literary essays, and poems. Her most recent book is Refugia Faith: Seeking Hidden Shelters, Ordinary Wonders, and the Healing of the Earth (Fortress 2022), a book that combines theology, nature writing, and biological principles to consider how Christians must adapt our faith and practice for a climate-altered planet. Rienstra is also the host of the Refugia Podcast and writes bi-weekly for The Twelve, a blog connected with The Reformed Journal, writing about spirituality, pop culture, the church, the arts, higher ed, and more.