Symposium on Environmental Stewardship & Sustainability Symposium on Environmental Stewardship & Sustainability

Symposium on Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability

Date: September 18-22, 2018 Time: Various Location: Evangel University & Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS)

About the event

The purpose of this conference is to equip students, pastors, and lay leaders with tools to help them navigate current faith and science issues related to environmental stewardship issues. Conference presenters are Christian experts in the fields of the environment, theology, philosophy, and science.

Register Now Downloadable Symposium Program


Meet our Speakers

Sandy Richter

Sandra Richter, Ph.D. (Keynote)

Professor of Old Testament, Robert H. Gundry Chair of Biblical Studies
Westmont College

Dr. Richter currently serves as the Robert H. Gundry Chair of Biblical Studies at Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California. She graduated from Valley Forge Christian College (now University of Valley Forge), earned a Master of Arts at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and completed a doctorate in Near Eastern languages and civilizations and Hebrew Bible at Harvard University. She previously taught at Asbury Theological Seminary, Wesley Biblical Seminary and Wheaton College. Previously, she served in professional ministry and speaks regularly to lay people. Her scholarly works include “The Deuteronomistic History and the Name Theology.” She wrote “The Epic of Eden: A Christian Entry into the Old Testament” and produced three DVD-based curriculums designed around the book. Forthcoming works include a commentary on Deuteronomy (Eerdmans), "The Fifth Gospel: A Christian Entry into the Book of Isaiah” (IVP Academic), and a book on environmental theology (Hendrickson).

Health Adamson

Heath Adamson

Chief of Staff
Convoy of Hope

Heath Adamson is an emerging author and serves as Chief of Staff at the relief organization, Convoy of Hope ( He also leads feedONE (, a team of people committed to fight poverty and hunger for children and families in need. With growing global influence, he serves as the Global Chairman for the World Assemblies of God Fellowship Next-Generation Commission, a community of over 360,000 churches. He also co-chairs Empowered21’s Next Generation Network. Heath is finishing his PhD work at the University of London. He frequently speaks nationally and internationally at conferences, universities, churches, and music festivals. Heath is married to Ali and they live in the Ozarks with their two daughters Leighton and Dallon.

Joel Salatin

Joel Salatin

Farmer, Lecturer, and Author of “Folks, This Ain't Normal,”
“You Can Farm,” and “Salad Bar Beef"

Joel Salatin is a farmer, lecturer, and author of “Folks, This Ain't Normal,” “You Can Farm,” and “Salad Bar Beef.” He is a Christian environmentalist, a wordsmith and master communicator, with 12 published books to his credit. He draws on a lifetime of food, farming and fantasy to entertain and inspire audiences around the world. He’s as comfortable moving cows in a pasture as addressing CEOs in a Wall Street business conference.

Matthew Sleeth

Matthew Sleeth, MD

MD, Speaker, Advocate of creation care, and Author of “Serve God, Save the Planet”

Matthew Sleeth, MD, a former emergency room physician and chief of the hospital medical staff, resigned from his position to teach, preach, and write about the biblical call to be good stewards of the earth. A highly sought after speaker, Dr. Sleeth has spoken at more than 1,000 churches, campuses, and events, including serving as the monthly guest preacher at The Washington National Cathedral for a year. Recognized by Newsweek as one of the nation’s most influential evangelical leaders, Dr. Sleeth is a graduate of George Washington University School of Medicine and has two postdoctoral fellowships. Dr. Sleeth is the executive director of Blessed Earth and author of Serving God, Saving the Planet; 24/6; the Introduction to The Green Bible, as well as numerous creation care books and articles. Dr. Sleeth lives in Lexington, KY, with Nancy, his wife of nearly 40 years. Their son and daughter-in-law serve as medical missionaries in Kenya, and daughter and son-in-law (a pastor) serve in ministry.

Mitch Hescox

Rev. Mitch Hescox

The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN)

Rev. Hescox co-authored, Caring for Creation: The Evangelical Guide To Climate Change and a Healthy Environment (Bethany House) with nationally known meteorologist, Paul Douglas, published numerous articles, and contributed to Sacred Acts: How Churches are working together to Protect Earth’s Climate (New Society Publishers). He has testified before Congress, spoke at the White House, presented at the Vatican and The Council for Foreign Relations. Rev. Hescox has appeared on CNN, NPR, PRI, MSNBC, and numerous radio programs both Christian and secular. Rev. Hescox serves as a member of the National Association of Evangelicals’ Board of Directors, EPA Clean Air Act Advisory Committee, the Board of Reference for the Center for Sustainable Climate Solutions and leads a small group at his local church. Prior to joining EEN, Mitch pastored a local church for 18 years, and before the call to ordained ministry served the coal and utility industry as Director, Fuel Systems for Allis Mineral Systems. He is married to Clare with four grown children and seven grandchildren.

Natalia Guerrerio-Brooks

Natalia Guerreiro-Brooks, D.Min.

Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Brookfield Orchards

Dr. Natalia Guerreiro-Brooks is Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Brookfield Orchards. Her role at Brookfield allows her to pursue two great passions: prompting healthy living practices in an energy responsible and environmentally sustainable manner while sharing the gospel and helping people grow in faith. A graduate of the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, Natalia’s D.Min. project was titled, “Sharing the Harvest: Malnutrition Abatement through Education and Home Garden Initiatives.” She facilitates home garden initiatives in her local community, providing education on gardening techniques and income generation that can help people work toward healthier, more sustainable lifestyles. By sharing the gospel as she walks with people on a pathway towards greater independence and food autonomy, she hopes to instill biblical ethics in her community while creating a culture of better health.

Eric Steinkamp

Eric Steinkamp, Ph.D.

Professor of Life Sciences
Northwest University

Eric Steinkamp is Professor of Environmental Science and Math and Science Department Chair at Northwest University, based in Kirkland, Washington. He holds a B.S. in Forestry from the University of Illinois, an M.S. in Forest Management from Stephen F. Austin State University, and a Ph.D. in Forest Science from Colorado State University. He also has a Masters in Divinity from the Assembly of God Theological Seminary. Dr. Steinkamp’s interests include application of environmental technologies to community development, studying alpine ecology, and the interplay between Christian theological understanding and environmental stewardship.

Jason Streubel

Jason Streubel, Ph.D.

Assoc. Prof. Biology, Evangel University
Senior Director — Program Effectiveness & Training, Convoy of Hope

Growing up on the only cherry orchard in western Washington Dr. Jason Streubel found a love for the earth and talking to people. It was during those years God started to shape Jason’s heart for the hurting around the world. Following his call for the hurting Jason attended Northwest University and completed a BA in Church Ministries: Missions and met his wife Mary (21 years). Jason and Mary went on to serve 4 churches in roles ranging from youth to lead pastors. During his pastoring God showed him his love for the earth and the hurting could work together, bringing his passion full circle. Jason returned to college while pastoring to complete a second BS from Northwest, a MS, and PhD in Soil Science from Washington State University. In 2011, "Dr. Dirt" joined the Convoy of Hope team to lead the new agriculture initiative where 16,629 individuals has been trained in agriculture. Currently Jason is the Senior Director of Program Effectiveness and Global training where he focuses on making sure Convoy is serving the hurting around the world in the best way possible. Since 2013 Jason has also served the Natural and Applied Science Department at Evangel University where he teaches students in the areas of agriculture and the environment. On his down time you will find Jason running (marathon’s to 100 milers), drinking coffee, and hanging out with his wife and kids.

Donna Washburn

Donna Washburn, Ph.D, LCSW

Program Director
Center For Compassion, Evangel University

Donna is a third-generation missionary kid. She was born in Zimbabwe and spent her first seven years there and in South Africa. Her heart for service grew as she was raised in a pastor’s home in Maine and New York, before enrolling at Evangel in the social work program. Donna graduated from Evangel in 1998 with a Bachelor’s in Social Work. She earned her master’s in Social Work from Missouri State University in 1999, and completed her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision from Regent University in 2015. She has taught upper-level social work classes at Evangel since 2000, and has served as the chair of the Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences there since 2009. Donna has spent 20 years mentoring students in identifying and living out their God given calling. This fall she will step into a new role as the Director of the Center for Compassion, a partnership between Evangel University and Convoy of Hope. Active in the community, Donna was named one of the 2017 Most Influential Women by the Springfield Business Journal last October. Donna’s husband, Bruce, is a school police officer with the Springfield Public Schools. Together they have three children, ages 5-17 years old.

Michael McCorcle

Michael McCorcle, Ph.D.

Executive VP, Provost, meteorologist
Evangel University

Dr. McCorcle, who will facilitate a session on climate change for the Symposium, says of his calling and his work at Evangel, “In 1995, God provided one the greatest blessings I have ever experienced - the opportunity to combine my commitments to my Christian faith with my professional aspirations. Prior to my career at Evangel, I had spent fifteen years as an educator and researcher in an atmospheric modeling and numerical weather prediction. In following the Lord’s leading back to Springfield, I was immediately moved by the Christian integrity of the Evangel faculty and was overwhelmed by the pleasure of teaching the Evangel students. Evangel University has been a glorious experience that, God-willing, I will pursue for the remainder of my career. I am deeply committed to the mission of Evangel University and count it an honor to contribute to the development of both current and future Evangel students. There is no other task that could provide more enjoyment for me than teaching a science class at Evangel."

Symposium Schedule

Downloadable Symposium Program

SEPTEMBER 18-22, 2018

10:00 AM @ Spence Chapel
Introduce EU / Convoy of Hope Partnership

Donna Washburn Evangel University

Heath Adamson Convoy of Hope ("Surrounded by the Sacred")

10:00 AM @ Spence Chapel
Eric Steinkamp

Professor of Life Sciences, Northwest University ("Power, Responsibility, Reproduction and Days Off")

9:30 AM @ Barnett Hall

Tickets for those who registered for Tours are available for pickup at the Registration Table.

10:00 AM @ Spence Chapel
Plenary: Joel Salatin

“Synchronizing Pew and Menu: Does What I Eat Look Like What I Believe?”

11:00 AM
Multiple Sessions

Spence Chapel – Joel Salatin (“Building a Farm and Food System as an Object Lesson of Spiritual Truth”)

Barnett Recital Hall – Mitch Hescox ("Loving God Requires Loving His Creation")

Zimmerman 105 – Jason Streubel ("Creation Care and the Spirit")

Trask 101 – Eric Steinkamp ("Lessons from Joseph on Climate Change")

12:00 PM

Lunch is on your own

1:00 PM
Multiple Sessions

AGTS Chapel – Joel Salatin ("Building a Farm and Food System as an Object Lesson of Spiritual Truth")

Trask 101 – Mitch Hescox ("Creation Care is a Mandatory Act of Discipleship")

Spence Chapel – Jason Streubel ("Creation Care and the Spirit")

Barnett Recital Hall – Eric Steinkamp ("Lessons from Joseph on Climate Change")

2:00 PM @ Spence Chapel
Plenary: Mitch Hescox

"Creation Care Is A Matter of Life"

4:00 PM – 6:30 PM

Pensmore Chateau Branson, MO (MEET VAN AT FLAGPOLE IN FRONT OF RIGGS) – Pensmore Chateau Tour (groups of 25) – RSVPs, 45-min tour + travel.

Convoy of Hope (transportation not provided) – Jason Streubel, Tour COH World Distribution Center (groups of 30)
“Where Compassion Rolls Out: See the Logistics of Compassion”

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM @ Zimmerman 320
Community Garden presentation with “lab” (hands-on workshop) (limit of 30)

Natalia Guerreiro-Brooks
“Will Work for Food: Understanding the Role of Ministry in a Consumptive Culture; Grow Creatively: Exploring Innovative and Sustainable Growing Techniques”

5:00 PM

Dinner is on your own

6:30 PM – 8:00 PM @ Spence Chapel
Keynote Speaker

Sandy Richter (Book Signing After)
“Can a Christian be an Environmentalist?"

8:00 AM @ Barnett Hall

Tickets for those who registered for Tours are available for pickup at the Registration Table.

8:30 AM – 11:00 AM
Tour Options

Pensmore Chateau Branson, MO (MEET VAN AT FLAGPOLE IN FRONT OF RIGGS) – Pensmore Chateau Tour (groups of 25) – RSVPs, 45-min tour + travel.

Convoy of Hope (transportation not provided) – Jason Streubel, Tour COH World Distribution Center (groups of 30)

9:30 AM – 10:30 AM
Multiple Sessions

AGTS Chapel – Sandy Richter (“Issues in a Biblical Theology of Creation Care”)

Trask 101 – Matthew Sleeth (“Keeping Hope Alive: Lessons from A Creation Care Veteran”)

Zimmerman 105 – Eric Steinkamp ("Environmental Stewardship, Sustainability and Connections to Poverty")

8:30 AM – 11:00 AM
Community Garden Field Trips (transportation not provided)

MSU (Limit of 30) - Natalia Guerreiro-Brooks – Witness the latest innovations in traditional, hydroponic, and pre-fabricated gardening models!

Students will carpool from one location to the next:

  • Location 1: Campus Garden (930 E. Normal St.) is a traditional garden format managed by students to provide hands on experience. Evangel participants will be able to discuss gardening techniques, optimal types of produce, and potential yields for each type of garden. They'll receive feedback on common gardening concerns, and see firsthand that young adults are maintaining growing communities just down the road.
  • Location 2: Karl's Hall (950 S. Carrington St.) features MSU student-designed hydroponic systems. Evangel participants will be able to witness how MSU students are creating their own unique and new hydroponic designs on a limited budget.
  • Location 3: Kemper Hall (921 S John Q Hammons Pkwy, in the basement of this building, only 10 students at a time) features pre-fabricated growing walls. Evangel participants will observe the productivity and every-day utilization of MSU’s zip wall. MSU will share how this wall provides fresh produce that is incorporated directly into the cafeteria menu options offered in MSU’s cafeteria.

Weller A – 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM (limit of 30) | Frank Rosenkrans – Associate with Springfield Community Gardens
Fairbanks A – 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM (limit of 30) | Emilee Blansit – Associate with Springfield Community Gardens

Weller B – 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (limit of 30) | Frank Rosenkrans – Associate with Springfield Community Gardens
Fairbanks B – 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (limit of 30) | Emilee Blansit – Associate with Springfield Community Gardens

Weller Community Garden – located behind Weller Community Church (park in church parking lot) 1624 E Blaine, Springfield, MO

Weller Community Church partners with the gardens to have a beautiful garden boasting over 4,000+ pounds of produce in 2018 alone. They also partner with Ozark Food Harvest to host a Food Distribution inside the 17 church each Wednesday afternoon to feed even more people in the Weller Community.

The Fairbanks Garden – located at The Fairbanks (park in Fairbanks parking lot or on street) 1126 N Broadway, Springfield, MO

Fairbanks Garden (Market Garden) was started via a grant from the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) in 2016 with the goal of establishing a regenerative farm that uses organic practices, providing the foundation for SCG to educate its volunteers on growing highly nutritious food to sell at the local farmer's market. Last year we were awarded the USDA community Food Project grant to continue these efforts and expand the training program by hiring farmer apprentices and developing value added products for the Life 360 Preschool on site. Our participants learn skills needed to start their own small farm businesses increasing economic sustainability and food access in Zone 1.

11:00 AM @ Barnett Recital Hall

Matthew Sleeth (“Reforesting Faith: What Trees Teach Us About the Nature of God and His Love for Us”)

Event Location

Evangel University & Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (AGTS)
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