Religion and Public Life Fellow

To highlight its commitment to Atlanta, the Department has launched a new position, the “Religion and Public Life Fellow.” The Religion and Public Life Fellow is an Atlanta-based high-profile professional who joins the Department for one academic year. This professional — who works in the media, politics, the corporate world, the arts, or a non-profit organization — will explore with us how religion plays a role in his/her profession. The Fellow will present a public lecture; meet with Department alumni, faculty and friends for a private dinner; and work with undergraduate and graduate students throughout the academic year.

The Department of Religious Studies is excited to announce that we will be hosting a new Religion and Public Life Fellow, Rev. Kate McGregor Mosley, Executive Director of Georgia Interfaith Power and Light, a 15-year-old nonprofit serving 15,000 communities of faith across the state “in practices of environmental stewardship and sustainability.” Kate will convene a discussion about religion and environmentalism focused on water at Pizza Tuesday on September 25th starting at 12:30, and she will host a panel conversation on a similar topic on the evening of March 12th. Please plan to join us!

In Reverend Mosley’s own words:

“I was intrigued by the invitation put forth last spring by Dr. Molly Bassett to serve as this year’s Religion & Public Life Fellow. I always welcome the opportunity to share the work of faithful environmental action with diverse communities. I also knew it could be a time of learning for me as well – to witness GSU’s own commitment to sustainability and how that might inform the work I bring into houses of worship across Georgia.

As an ordained Presbyterian minister, my full-time ministry is the practice of environmental stewardship. That is not a common vocation but definitely one to which I am called. My work as the executive director of a religious environmental organization means that I sit daily at the intersection of religion and ecology. Our organizational mission is to inspire congregations to incorporate sustainability and environmental stewardship into all aspects of their congregational programs. But this is so much more than just helping houses of worship reduce their environmental impact, as important as that is (worshipping communities take up a lot of land and use a lot of natural resources here in Georgia!). This work is about elevating the conversation about our shared responsibility to care for the Earth while addressing the impacts of climate change. The faith community has a unique voice in this conversation.

My own religious studies taught me that all of the world’s major religions share the value of caring for our neighbors. Addressing climate change and engaging in environmental action shows love of neighbor.

Today, love of neighbor looks like:
– a new energy plan that provides affordable, renewable energy;
– a more sustainable, plant-focused diet that wastes less;
– planting trees one grove at a time; and
– engaging our elected officials to adopt climate action plans for all communities.

All of these climate actions can be practiced as individuals, congregations, schools and as entire communities. During my time as a fellow, I welcome the opportunity to engage in thoughtful dialogue that brings us closer to this vision of loving our neighbor while caring for our fragile planet.”