The following was written by Mary Davidson, a member of the White Plains Presbyterian Church, for inclusion in our mid-week newsletter.
Wangari Maathai, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate of 2004, Kenyan woman who spoke for the women of the world, environmental sustainability, the human rights of all peoples and the survivability of animals in the face of thoughtless destruction of our earth and over development passed away on Sept 26, 2011.
The White Plains Presbyterian Church was privileged to have her visit several times and to hear her give a great talk from the pulpit filled with wisdom, humor, dedication and commitment to the rights of our planet, the trees specifically and all of us human creatures. She planted a tree which is growing well and happily providing shade from the summer’s heat and keeps us ever mindful that a tree is a reminder of faith. A tree is planted and with strength and a little water will keep its roots firmly grounded and thriving to provide oxygen, beauty and often fruit to humans, becoming taller, fuller and stronger just as we grow in faith.
Following that talk WPPC invited her to maintain her US and International headquarters for her tree planting movement in an office at the church which she did for a year.
Wangari loved her connection to WPPC, she visited when she was able and considered it her church home in the US.
A giant has passed from our midst, but her legacy of wisdom, great works, joy, determination and inspiration will allow the work to continue well into the future and forever.
She would want us each to plant a tree or several in her memory and to encourage our children to be mindful of each tree. She often said that if she did not have a seedling or sapling and a shovel readily available she would simply next to or under a tree to be reminded of its importance in each of our lives.
Read about her life and her work on www.Greenbeltmovement.org and pray for her and her family.
Remember Wangari: you will never meet her like again.
I add here, below Mary’s writing, a link to another story Frances Moore Lappe and Anna Lappe posted this week in the Huffington Post.