Halki Summit 2012

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America

Under the Auspices of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew

The Halki Summit – sponsored by the Ecumenical Patriarchate and co-sponsored by Southern New Hampshire University – is a conversation on environment, ethics and innovation among a distinguished group of activists, scientists, journalists, business leaders, theologians, and academics. At the heart of this discussion is the recognition that no healing environmental action can be successful without a fundamental change in values as manifested in ethics and spirituality.

On the small island of Heybeliada, just off the coast of Istanbul, at the historical Theological School of Halki, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, spiritual leader of the Eastern Orthodox Church and a pioneer in the environmental movement, will host a gathering from June 18-20, 2012 on global responsibility and environmental sustainability.

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, often known as “the Green Patriarch” for persistently proclaiming the primacy of spiritual values in determining environmental ethics and action, will preside over this historic gathering. In 2008, His All-Holiness was listed in Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World for “defining environmentalism as a spiritual responsibility.”

From 1994-1998, His All-Holiness organized five Summer Seminars on environment and society. From 1995-2009, he convened eight International Symposia on Religion, Science and Environment. This year, His All-Holiness is organizing the Halki Summit. While the symposia took place in ecologically sensitive stretches of water as far away as Estonia, Brazil and Greenland, this gathering will be a more focused meeting on the Patriarch’s home ground.

The conversation will cover three topical and timely issues:

  •     Biodiversity and Conservation
  •    Energy and Climate Change
  •    Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability

Keynote speakers include three eminent educators and authors:

Jane Goodall, primatologist and conservationist
Gary Hirshberg, president, Stonyfield Farm
Bill McKibben, author and environmentalist

Four prominent panelists from different backgrounds will offer a response. The sessions will be chaired by renowned broadcaster and author, Krista Tippett of “On Being” (American Public Media), while the closing session will be chaired by Metropolitan John [Zizioulas] of Pergamon, the most prominent Orthodox spokesman on environmental issues.

This conference seeks to bring a new dimension of personal and cultural change more firmly into the larger international dialogue on sustainability. Our hope is that the participants leave resolved to include the ethical and spiritual dimension of environmental sustainability in their work going forward. In addition we hope to bring new moral and ethical dimensions to the way we address ecological issues.

For further information, see www.halkisummit.org.

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