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Turning to the Heavens and the Earth

Theological Reflections on a Cosmological Conversion: Essays in Honor of Elizabeth A. Johnson
Edited by Julia Brumbaugh and Natalia Imperatori-Lee, Foreword by Mary Catherine Hilkert

ISBN: 9780814687727, 8772
Details: 336 pgs, 6 x 9
Publication Date: 05/16/2016


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The Earth needs our attention--the best of our intellectual, ethical, and spiritual wisdom and action. In this collection, written in honor of Elizabeth A. Johnson, scholars from the United States and around the world contribute their insights on how theology today can and must turn to the world in new ways in light of contemporary science and our ecological crisis. The essays in this collection advance theological visions for the human task of healing our destructive relationship with the earth and envision hope for our planet's future.


Kevin Glauber Ahern

Erin Lothes Biviano

Lisa Sowle Cahill

Colleen Mary Carpenter

David Cloutier

Kathy Coffey

Carol J. Dempsey, OP

Denis Edwards

William French

Ivone Gebara

John F. Haught

Mary Catherine Hilkert, OP

Sallie McFague

Eric Daryl Meyer

Richard W. Miller

Jürgen Moltmann

Jeannette Rodriguez

Michele Saracino

Julia Brumbaugh is an associate professor of religious studies at Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She holds a PhD from Fordham University in contemporary systematic theology. She is active in the Catholic Theological Society of America, where she is co-convener of the Women's Consultation in Constructive Theology. Her teaching and writing focus on spirituality and ecclesiology.

Natalia Imperatori-Lee is associate professor of religious studies at Manhattan College in Riverdale, New York. She teaches in the areas of contemporary Catholicism, US Latino/a theology, and gender studies. She earned a PhD in systematic theology from the University of Notre Dame and is currently working on a monograph for Orbis Books on the importance of narrative in Catholic ecclesiology. She lives in the Bronx with her spouse and her two young sons.

"Far more than a festschrift, this volume in honor of feminist and ecological theologian Elizabeth Johnson attests to the multi-modal, multi-generational impacts that radiate from the theological work and mentorship of this esteemed scholar. With essays ranging from cosmos to earthly embodiment, from bonobos to the Anthropocene, and from Christology to ethics, Turning to the Heavens and the Earth is a delightful testimony to frontiers in theological thinking that have been charted by Elizabeth Johnson. Essays in the book brim with insights, and the volume as a whole coheres beautifully."
Christiana Z. Peppard, Fordham University

"This is a fine collection of essays in honor of the redoubtable theologian, Elizabeth Johnson, with social attention paid to Johnson's lifelong, major contributions to the central issues of God, humankind, and cosmos. A fitting and welcome tribute to a splendid theologian."
David Tracy, The University of Chicago

"If you love Elizabeth Johnson and her work on cosmic theology then you will gain wonderful insights and inspiration from this book. If you are passionate about Earth and nurturing this gift, then this book will give you added encouragement and a sense of hope."
Jo Bell, Tui Motu InterIslands

"These essays call for a cosmological theology that will help us transform, reimagine, rethink, and live in a new sustainable relationship with the world and all that is in it."
Catholic Press Association award, second place in faith and science category

"A profound achievement of Turning to the Heavens and the Earth is the simple fact that, unlike so many festschrifts, the fifteen essays contained herein read as a seamless communion, building upon one another and repeatedly referring to Johnson's wisdom as the inspiration for each unique contribution. This book makes certain that theology can no longer shadow or veil the cosmos in its dealings with the mystery of God."
Stephen S. Wilbricht, Catholic Books Review

"From beginning to end, this book is a formidable example of what theology—done in relationship and en conjunto—can contribute to cosmological consciousness, conscience, and conversion. Indeed, it is a timely testament to the compelling reasons why, as Elizabeth Johnson says, `You just have to keep doing theology!'"
Margaret Eletta Guider, OSF, Theological Studies

"Younger theologians might call Elizabeth Johnson a `rock star.' Although that is not a theological category, I think the celestial metaphor is fitting for the stellar scholarship she has generated over the decades and that, in turn, has attracted a constellation of colleagues, peers, students, and others to do theology that simultaneously orbits the tradition while boldly exploring new space(s) for understanding the One in whom we `live and move and have our being' (Acts 17:28). Humans, nonhuman animals, and indeed all of creation are encompassed in this `we' as reflected in the light that these essays emit as a tribute to Johnson's gravitas. Now as we face urgent environmental issues and as we extend our human footprint further into our solar system's small corner of the galaxy, the theological work offered in this collection is indeed most welcome."
Tobias Winright, Mäder Endowed Chair of Health Care Ethics and Associa te Professor of Theological Ethics, Saint Louis University