Yale Divinity School provides academic opportunities intersecting religion and ecology, sustainability and other environmentally themed topics. Sample classes that have been taught in recent semesters with environmental and ecological themes are listed below.
The Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and Yale Divinity School offer a joint Masters degree program in Religion and Ecology. It is aimed at students who wish to integrate the study of environmental issues and religious communities in their professional careers and for those who wish to study the cultural and ethical dimensions of environmental problems.
Separate from the joint degree with the School of Forestry is the Masters of Arts and Religion concentration in Religion and Ecology offered by Yale Divinity School.
Ministry for the Earth Community, co-sponsored by the Divinity School and the Forum on Religion and Ecology, is a leadership training program offered to any student, particularly those whose degree requirements may not allow them to take a semester elective. Started in fall 2014, the three-year pilot program combines theory and practice with hands-on activities. Participants develop skills to foster a sense of creation care among religious leaders and tools to grow this sense of co-dependence and mutual respect for the Earth in our communities.
Across the world, the ecological and policy implications of climate change become more obvious with each passing year. But Professors Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim of Yale Divinity School and the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (F&ES) suggest that for the global community to adequately respond to the crisis it has to recognize another key element: Climate change is also a moral and social justice issue.
As communities worldwide face the consequences of rising seas, drought, and food shortages, religious leaders are adding their voices to the climate discussion. Indeed, these leaders are increasingly speaking on a range of environmental issues, from biodiversity loss to deforestation to toxic pollution.
The study of how religious traditions interact with the natural world — and how these communities can play a greater role in environmental stewardship — is a field that Tucker and Grim have helped develop for more than two decades in the classroom and through the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale.