Spiritual Environmentalism isn’t an oxymoron


You Don’t Have to Choose Between Loving God and Loving His Creation.

Before the snake, the apple, and the Ten Commandments, God created a garden, placed humans in it, and told them to take care of it.

“Spiritual environmentalism” did not start out as an oxymoron- it was an invitation. Yet today, many believe God’s original job description for humankind has been replaced by other worthier pursuits. So when did this simple instruction become so controversial? How does one sort through all the mixed messages? Is making the world a healthier place for the next generation really a responsibility-or even possible?

Gardening Eden is a new understanding of how the spiritual dimensions of life can find expression and renewal through caring for our incredible planet. Empowering, simple, and never polemical, Michael Abbaté outlines the Bible’s clear spiritual benefits of caring for creation, exploring new motivations and inspired ideas, and revealing the power of our basic connection to all people and living things through the growing interest in spiritual environmentalism.

Green living is no longer a fad-simple lifestyle solutions are now available to everyone. Gardening Eden shows how this shift transforms not only our world, but our very souls as we’re drawn into deeper harmony with the Creator. This book invites readers to discover the powerful spiritual satisfaction of heeding the call to save our world.

Gardening Tip #22: Do remodels right

If you are about to do a major change to you home, do your homework. There are many new products and processes that can dramatically improve your home’s energy performance. Studies have shown that it can only take two to six years to recoup you initial increased investment in higher performance doors, windows, insulation systems and heating and cooling systems.


Michael Abbaté, ASLA, LEEDTM is a landscape architect by profession, City Planning Director by position, and son of the Creator by adoption.  Author of Gardening Eden: How Creation Care Will Change Your Faith, Your Life and Our World, published by WaterBrook/Random House, he speaks to churches and other communities of faith about our responsibility to be stewards of Creation. A nationally recognized expert in green development strategies, Michael is a co-founder of GreenWorks, an award-winning landscape architecture design firm. He also frequently speaks to community leaders, universities and design professionals and about practical ways to minimize the impact of development while restoring natural systems and processes.  Currently the Urban Design & Planning Director for Gresham, Oregon, his works have been featured in national magazines, newspapers, and trade publications.

After half a century of life, he admits there is much to learn about being a better steward of the planet. Though we do not fully understand the intricacies of Creation, Michael is convinced we will be blessed in our efforts to Tend the Garden.  One of the most telling ways we demonstrate the transforming power of our faith is when we make personal sacrifices that protect Creation.  Conversely, our failure to do so often keeps people from investigating the claims of Christ.  Environmental conservation is not a right, left, liberal or conservative issue.  Rather, it is a spiritual one.

In addition to being a registered Landscape Architect in multiple states, he is certified nationally through the Council of Landscape Architects Registration Board, and is a LEED Accredited Professional.  This national certification by the United States Green Building Council recognizes an individual’s understanding of the ways in which the built environment can be designed to minimize its impact on the natural systems and resources.   He is also a member of the American Society of Landscape Architects and served for six years on an Advisory Board for the University of Oregon.

Abbaté graduated from Cal Poly Pomona with a degree in Landscape Architecture, magna cum laude.  In 2007, he was recognized by the University as the Distinguished Alumnus from the College of Environmental Design.  He also has a certificate in Business Administration from Portland State University.

Mike is the father of two daughters, both University of Oregon Ducks.  He and his wife Vicki have been married for over 30 years and live near Portland, OR.


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