Below is a beautiful prayer shared by the ecumenical community for the Care of Creation. I found it online on Casa: An Experiment in Doing Church Online https://www.facebook.com/groups/casacommunity/. Each week a different person chosen by the moderator hosts prayers for each day. This post came up for today, and the prayer is lovely. You can also read more about this day Sept. 1, at the World Council of Churches website: http://www.oikoumene.org/en/press-centre/news/churches-to-pray-for-care-of-creation. The commentary below preceding the prayer is offered by the Rev. Peggy Howland, a pastor in the Presbyterian church. It’s also a wonderful reminder to open up to the beauty of creation. Ephphatha!
September 1st – World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation
Pope Francis recently proclaimed September 1st as the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation,” joining Ecumenical Patriarch Dimitrios I of Constantinople, who earlier extended an invitation for Christians to offer together ”every year on this date prayers and supplications to the Maker of all, both as thanksgiving for the great gift of creation and as petitions for its protection and salvation.”
Rev. Dr. Olav Fykse Tveit, the World Council of Churches General Secretary, wrote: “Pope Francis’s ecumenical initiative reinforces the growing emphasis on prayer for the care of creation among all the churches. We welcome the opportunity to join our efforts with those of the Ecumenical Patriarch and now the Catholic Church, and through prayer to sharpen our awareness and commitment to God’s creation, ‘our common home,’ as Pope Francis has called it.”
“A prayer for our earth”
All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe
and in the smallest of your creatures.
You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.
Pour out upon us the power of your love,
that we may protect life and beauty.
Fill us with peace, that we may live
as brothers and sisters, harming no one.
O God of the poor,
help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth,
so precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives,
that we may protect the world and not prey on it,
that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction.
Touch the hearts
of those who look only for gain
at the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,
to be filled with awe and contemplation,
to recognize that we are profoundly united
with every creature
as we journey towards your infinite light.
We thank you for being with us each day.
Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle
for justice, love and peace.
In his 2015 Encyclical Letter, Laudato Si’ (“Praise Be to You”): On Care for Our Common Home,” Pope Francis proposed this interfaith prayer that “we can share with all who believe in a God who is the all-powerful Creator” .