2015 Rider Profile: Karl Raynar

Meet Karl Raynar, fourth in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2015 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 1-5.

KAR Photo1While driving back from a Weatherization First project in January, Jon Brockopp told me about IPL’s annual bike trip to DC. I immediately became interested for two reasons – a love of bicycling and a chance to practice my faith as an environmental steward.

I’ve been biking for over 50 years and love it more than when I was a kid. I ride my bike to work, shop, and worship whenever I am able. We’ve had a group at our Church (the Trinity Wheelmen) that has been mountain biking together for the last 15 years. I look forward to every Tuesday night ride.

I’ve been interested in the environment since 1970 when I was a student at the University of Michigan. I attended a teach-in where Gaylord Nelson, Barry Commoner, Paul Ehrlich, Ralph Nader, and Walter Reuther all spoke about the environment. That event left a lasting impression on me.

My church, Trinity Lutheran, has recently formed a “Care of Creation Team” where we Continue reading

2015 Rider Profile: Pam Grugan

Meet Pam Grugan, third in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2015 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 1-5.  PamGrugan

The other day I told a friend I was going to ride to D.C.

“You’re crazy,” he said.

I suppose he’s right.  I’m 52.  I’m not athletic.  And my bike is about 17 years old.  I suppose I am crazy…in a good way.

What is it that motivates me to want to do something as crazy as ride my bike from central Pennsylvania to D.C.?   I think IT’S MOTHERHOOD.

I’ve devoted my energy to the growth and well being of my children for over 25 years. Continue reading

2015 Rider Profile: Peter Buckland

Meet Peter Buckland, second in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2015 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 1-5, though Peter will leave later and meet the cyclists prior to their evening in Poolesville, MD.

CICADA FACEI woke up  early to do a long mountain bike ride. Putting on my jersey, I noticed something was lodged below my right armpit. It was a tiny deer tick nymph, its limp legs dangling out of my flesh, its mouth parts bolted into my flesh. The previous day I’d been walking around a vernal pond watching ring-necked ducks and tundra swans on a gorgeous 60-degree day.

It was February. In Pennsylvania.

The white and pink blossoms of Continue reading

2015 Rider Profile: Pastor Ben Wideman

Meet Ben Wideman, first in our get-to-know-the-riders series.  The 2015 PA-to-DC ride  will take place May 1-5.  

IMG_3885 - Version 2I grew up paying little attention to the environment around me.  My family strived to live simply – not necessarily for the environmental benefits, but because it saved money and resources to reduce, reuse, and recycle.  Something changed for me in high school and then college, where working to lower my carbon footprint and to live a more eco-friendly life became an essential part of my spiritual existence.  I began to see my Christian faith as one that was centered on peace and justice for all.  I began to discover that most Continue reading

Awaken our leaders with moral messages.

 AdvocacyTrainingWorkshopHeaderRead below, then link to the full article from the Montgomery News on Saturday, March 7, 2015.  Thank you to Arlene Edmonds and the Montgomery News for the coverage of Climate Disruption is a Moral Issue: Interfaith Climate Advocacy Training.  Note: links appearing below were added by PA IPL.

Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light conference focuses on interfaith climate advocacy

Center City— Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light is moving beyond protesting oil bomber trains and holding meetings to unite Christians, Jews, Muslims and other faiths together to discuss the environment. It is now training those in these faith-based communities to influence the leery, the uninformed and misinformed about why they should be involved in advocating for social justice climate issues.

Maybe more voices will listen now on the heels of numerous train derailments,  including the type of crude oil trains it has Continue reading

Fasting for the courage of those in power.

This piece was written for the Shalom Center’s Purim to Pesach blog feature “a daily comment on the meaning of Pesach” by a different author each day. 

The book of Esther is famously one of only two books in the Jewish Bible within which God’s name is not mentioned.  God’s absence is felt from the beginning of the book as we are introduced to King Ahasuerus, who rules over the vast territory from India to Ethiopia, and whose leadership style includes holding a banquet for his nobles and governors for more than one hundred and eighty days, in order to display the vast riches of the empire and to elevate his own glory.  Royal wine flows into golden beakers with abandon.

This image makes me think of our globalized world today, as we consume Continue reading