For Stewardship of God’s Creation

Today, let us pray for faithful stewardship of God’s creation. Caring for the environment is a dutiful endeavor, and we often need support as we work daily to protect and sustain the earth.

For Stewardship of Creation

O merciful Creator, thy hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature: Make us, we beseech thee, ever thankful for thy loving providence; and grant that we, remembering the account that we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of thy good gifts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with thee and the Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Read Psalm 84

Reflection Questions:
  • Where do you feel most at home in creation?
  • In what ways are you stewarding the good gifts God has given you?

For the Fruitful Earth

Today, join us in prayer for the fruitful earth.

For Agriculture

Almighty God, we thank you for making the earth fruitful, so that it might produce what is needed for life: Bless those who work in the fields; give us seasonable weather; and grant that we may all share the fruits for the earth, rejoicing in your goodness; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Read Psalm 121

Reflection Questions:
  • How can you work with the earth, helping it to bear its natural fruits?
  • Where do you see God in the bounty of the earth?

Prayer for Conservation of Natural Resources

Today, join us in prayer for the conservation of natural resources.

For the Conservation of Natural Resources

Almighty God, in giving us dominion over things on earth, you made us fellow workers in your creation: Give us wisdom and reverence so to use the resources of nature, that no one may suffer from our abuse of them, and that generations yet to come may continue to praise you for your bounty; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Read Psalm 111

Reflection Questions:
  • I wonder how you participate in conserving our natural resources?
  • How do you give thanks for the resources God has blessed us with?

 

Prayer for Creation

Prayerful consideration of this earth can bring us closer to God’s creation and is an integral part of how we care for the environment. Each Sunday of 30 Days of Action, we will suggest a prayer for God’s creation. During these 30 Days, as we work together to address climate change, may we also be reminded of the glory and splendor that is God’s green earth. Today, join us in a prayer for the creation.

Collect written by The Episcopal Church’s Season of Creation Liturgical Committee

(http://eenonline.org/reflect/liturgy.htm)

God, maker of marvels, you weave the planet and all its creatures together in kinship: Your unifying love is revealed in the interdependence of relationships in the complex world that you have made. Save us from the illusion that humankind is separate and alone, and join us in communion with all inhabitants of the universe, through Jesus Christ, our Liberator, who topples the dividing walls, and by the power of your Holy Spirit; who live and reign with you for ever and ever. Amen.

Read Psalm 96

Reflection Questions:
  • I wonder how God is calling you to be in relationship with this complex world.
  • How might you sing the praise of God’s creation?

 

Spend Time in Nature

Play tag, run like a kid, take a walk just for the joy of being outside.

Spending time in nature helps us relax and find ourselves in a place where God might speak to us in our hearts.  Time spent in joyful recreation allows us to truly be the people God made us to be.

Reflect on your experience:
  • Journal or draw a picture about your playtime or time in nature.
  • I wonder how this time in nature brought you closer to creation?
  • I wonder where you saw, heard, or felt God?
  • Share your experience on Social Media using #Episcopal #30Days

Take a Close Look

Take a close look at a flower, a tree, or a bug.  Marvel at God’s creation.

Awe and wonder are at the crux of spirituality.  Appreciating and caring for our environment is a way we can respond to God’s care of us.

Reflect on your experience:
  • Journal or draw a picture about what you saw.
  • I wonder what you noticed that you hadn’t before?
  • I wonder how stopping to take a close look at something you might see everyday gave you a different appreciation for the object?
  • I wonder where you saw, heard, or felt God?
  • Share your experience on Social Media using #Episcopal #30Days

Unplug

Unplug: take a break from the digital world for just one hour and enjoy the peace of the natural world. On this Holy Saturday, the day before Easter, notice where you see the stories of Holy Week in nature.

  • Where do you see death and resurrection?
  • Where do you notice new life?
  • What do those signs of resurrection and new life mean to you?

Sabbath is an important part of our spiritual heritage.  Spending time in nature leads us into a place where we can become closer to God.

Reflect on your experience:
  • Journal or draw a picture about your “unplugged” time
  • I wonder how being intentionally unplugged help you notice other things?
  • I wonder where you saw, heard, or felt God?
  • Share your experience on Social Media using #Episcopal #30Days

Enjoy Nature

file000697009552Find a special place in nature to do something you enjoy: read a book, play a musical instrument, play a game, draw a picture.

Spending time in nature fosters awareness of environmental issues.  Falling in love with one spot in nature often leads to care of all creation.

Reflect on your experience:

  • Journal or draw a picture about your time in nature
  • I wonder how this time in nature brought you closer to creation?
  • I wonder where you saw, heard, or felt God?
  • Share your experience on Social Media using #Episcopal #30Days

Low Carbon Potluck

Throw a potluck and invite participants to bring their favorite meal with a catch. Ask them to incorporate low carbon, seasonal and local substitutes in place of high carbon footprint ingredients. During the meal, talk about the changes you each made and share where the different ingredients of your meal came from.

Five Steps Towards a Low Carbon Meal
  1. Include more fruits and vegetables. Use less meat and dairy.
  2. Refer back to the Eat Low Carbon Quiz diet tips: www.eatlowcarbon.org/diet-tips/
  3. Shop at local farmer’s market, farm stand, or grocery store that provides seasonal and regionally grown/processed foods. Find a local community garden, backyard garden, or church garden that you can glean or buy your veggies from.
  4. Purchase items that use little to no packaging.
  5. Enjoy your meal with friends and family who have walked, carpooled, or taken public transportation to join the feast.
  6. (Extra) Remember, these activities are meant to create awareness, opportunities for conversation and grow new relationships within your community, so have fun exploring!

For more information on Low Carbon Diets: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low_carbon_diet

Prayer

Creator God, we can choose to live differently.  Inspire us as we make choices so that we will recognize the impact our lives have on our environment and our human family around the globe.

We pray to the Lord:  Lord, help us reclaim the present moment and future.

Loving God, encourage us to be people of hope as we look forward in faith, knowing that we can build a world of justice and peace.

 

Farm to Altar Table

Research from ground to altar the journey of the bread/wafer/wine/grape juice that your congregation uses for Eucharist each week.

Food is God’s love made edible. The Eucharist, or Communion, is a sacrament that every branch of Christianity holds with special regard.  Speak with your pastor so that your church uses communion bread and wine that are produced in a way that honors God’s creative work.  Also, as Spring approaches, have church members sign up to bring flowers from their gardens, or plan to grow some flowers on the church property.  This can not only save money and use fewer fossil fuels, but can make worship more meaningful (make sure to testify in worship if your church does this!)

– from the 2015 Ecumenical Lent Carbon Fast

Example of one Episcopal Priest thinking about Farm to Altar Table: http://whatsupwithwheat.com/why-im-blogging/