The mission of the International Jesuit Ecology Project (IJEP) is to create a free online Living Text in environmental science for upper level secondary school and beginning college students that addresses the major ecological challenges of our time from an integrated scientific, spiritual, and ethical perspective.
In his September 16, 2011 letter to the Jesuits around the world, Superior General Adolfo Nicolás referenced the recently published document Healing a Broken World (HBW) and challenged the Society of Jesus to redouble its commitment to environmental stewardship in gratitude to God for the gift of the natural world. HBW asked Jesuit institutions of higher education to “engage students in transformative education”, specifically calling for development of “curricula that address sustainability issues and impart a certain level of environmental literacy”.
To meet Father General’s challenge and the HBW recommendations, the Higher Education Secretariat of the Society of Jesus proposed a three-year International Jesuit Ecology Project (IJEP) to create an online Living Text that addresses select environmental challenges from an integrated scientific, moral, and spiritual perspective. This Living Text, Healing Earth, will be a curricular resource on environmental studies for teachers and students in institutions of higher education and secondary schools worldwide.
IJEP is led by a team from Loyola University Chicago (LUC) and includes lead experts in science, spirituality and ethics from throughout the Society of Jesus' six world regions: Africa, Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, North America, and South Asia. When the first edition of the textbook is launched in January 2016 it will include chapters on Biodiversity, Natural Resources, Energy, Water, and Global Climate Change. There will also be a Teacher’s Guide available to help environmental science educators in the areas of ethics and spirituality and provide sample lesson plans.
If you are a scientist, theologian, or ethicist with expertise in one of the Healing Earth chapters, we welcome your comments and advice regarding current text as well as suggestions for additional materials and chapters.
If you are a secondary school teacher or a professor of young college students with an interest in ecology and environmental science, we invite you to consider 1) reading and commenting on one of the Healing Earth chapters, 2) piloting select chapters of Healing Earth in your environmental science (or, “Religion and Science”) courses.
If you are interested in helping the IJEP or would like more information about IJEP and Healing Earth, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.