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Climate Justice Diaries: Fleeing the Hot Spots

Wednesday December 8 2021

A lecture from Dr Ruth Padilla DeBorst, delivered to coincide with COP26, examining how climate change will drive migration among vulnerable people.


Dr. Ruth Padilla DeBorst is a well-known Latin American theologian, missiologist, educator and story-teller who has been involved in leadership development and theological education for several decades.

She passionately pursues ecological justice, authentic community, and participative, contextual forms of theological education. Ruth currently serves with Resonate Global Mission, leading CETI (Comunidad de Estudios Teológicos Interdisciplinarios) and is on the Networking Team of INFEMIT (The International Fellowship for Mission as Transformation). Ruth has been involved in leadership development and theological education for integral mission in her native Latin America for many years with the Christian Reformed Church. She and her husband, James, have ‘more children and grandchildren than they can count’ and live in the intentional community of Casa Adobe in Costa Rica, with a deep concern for right living in relation to Creation.

In the context of COP26 in Glasgow, Dr Ruth Padilla DeBorst delivered the Alexander Duff Missionary Lecture, entitled “Fleeing the hot spots: Climate change, migration and mission.” Using Central America as a case study, Dr Padilla DeBorst  addressed concerns around the vulnerability of people because of changing climatic conditions that effect many parts of the globe. She examined how this forces migration, and what the role of the church can be in the midst of these realities.

Her lecture was followed by responses from two World Christianity PhD students, Nuam Hatzaw and Alec Simpson, and a time of discussion.

You can watch the lecture below:


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Climate Justice Diaries: a new series in which Church of Scotland partners from around the world explore the impact of climate change, and what is being done to help. 

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Gorden Simango on how the crisis is affecting the poorest in Africa.