Season of Creation 2021
The Season of Creation has a special significance for the Catholic Church, particularly since Pope Francis established 1 September as an annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation.
The Season of Creation or Creation Time, is marked throughout the Christian world from 1 September to 4 October (Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi) and celebrates the joy of creation as well as encouraging awareness-raising initiatives to protect the natural environment.
Restoring Our Common Home
The theme for the Season of Creation 2021 is ‘Restoring Our Common Home’. During this season we are asked to join together to celebrate creation and protect our common home through prayer, reflection and action.
The global Christian family is called to awaken to the urgent need to heal our relationships with creation and with each other and to encourage our parish communities to do the same, “for we know that things can change!” (Laudato Si’, 13).
This year we celebrate this season mindful of the fact that our world continues to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic as well as a devastating climate and biodiversity crisis. We look towards two UN Conferences in the Autumn, COP15 (on Biodiversity, due to take place in China) and COP24 (on climate change, Glasgow) in the hope that world leaders take the urgent action that is needed to Restore Our Common Home. Catholics are urged to sign the “Healthy Planet Healthy People” petition as a key action for this year’s Season of Creation. This petition has been endorsed by the Vatican Dicastery for Integral Human Development in the hope that millions of Catholics will raise their voices in the public sphere to help Restore Our Common Home in the run up to these vital UN Conferences.
At this time every person on our planet is confronted with two interconnected crises: the coronavirus pandemic and the ecological crisis. Both define our age. Both require urgent action. But it is the reality of climate change that is ‘humanity’s defining challenge.’ Over the coming decades, the havoc of the pandemic will pale when compared to that of climate change.
To respond to the climate crisis, and to mark the Season of Creation—which began on September 1st and continues until the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi on October 4th—Archbishop Farrell has published a pastoral letter, The Cry of the Earth—The Cry of the Poor: the Climate Catastrophe—Creation’s Urgent Call for Change. This pastoral is an invitation to all people—those in the Church and those beyond—to reflect on the climate crisis in new ways, so that the baptised may live the life of faith more vibrantly, and everyone may respond more actively to the serious situation in which the world finds itself. The pastoral letter is available on online, as well as in hardcopy from Veritas.
Click on the image below to read The Cry of the Earth – The Cry of the Poor
Hard copies of The Cry of the Earth, the Cry of the Poor now available from Veritas
Prayer of Intercession, 23rd Sunday B
It is the Lord who keeps faith forever, who establishes justice for the oppressed, and who gives bread to the hungry (Pause). That our ears and our hearts may be open to the cry of the poor so that every person may be able to live with hope and dignity on this Earth, our common home. Lord, hear us.
We look with helplessness and compassion on the many natural disasters unfolding around us—the scorched earth and the parched land of which Isaiah speaks (Pause). That we may find the resourcefulness and resolve to act for the good of the Earth—God’s gift to everyone, and the only place we have to live, our common home. Lord, hear us.
“We need to strengthen the conviction that we are one single human family.”
“The Earth, our home, is beginning to look more and more like an immense pile of filth. In many parts of the planet, the elderly lament that once beautiful landscapes are now covered with rubbish.”
“Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last 200 years.”
“We are not God. The Earth was here before us and was given to us.”
“The idea of infinite or unlimited growth, which proves so attractive to economists, financiers and experts in technology … is based on the lie that there is an infinite supply of the earth’s goods, and this leads to the planet being squeezed dry at every limit.”
“Yet all is not lost. Human beings, while capable of the worst, are also capable of rising above themselves, choosing again what is good, and making a new start.
Click here for resources on the Care of Creation from the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.
Click here to read Pope Francis’ Encyclical letter Laudato Si’ on care for our common home
Parish Clean up (Our Common Home) – Practical Suggestions for Parishes
(From the Office for Mission and Ministry)
Acts of Love for the Season of Creation 2021
(Care for Creation team at Bonnybrook Parish)
An Earth Day Prayer Service
(This beautiful service was compiled by Balally Parish to celebrate Earth Day in 2021 but could be adapted and used as part of any Season of Creation event. It includes a reflection by Father Dermot Lane.)
Practical Actions for Parishes 2021
(Resources from the Laudato Si’ Working Group)
Tree Planting Resource for the Season of Creation 2021
(Restore Our Common Home this year by engaging your parish or diocese in Tree Planting initiatives. Thanks to ‘Easy Treesie’ we have all the tips you need and prayers for tree planting)
Click Here for more resources are available from the Irish Catholic Bishop’s Conference
A prayer for our earth from Laudato Si’
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.
A Christian prayer in union with creation
Father, we praise you with all your creatures.
They came forth from your all-powerful hand; they are yours, filled with your presence and your tender love.
Praise be to you!
Son of God, Jesus,
through you all things were made.
You were formed in the womb of Mary our Mother, you became part of this earth, and you gazed upon this world with human eyes.
Today you are alive in every creature
in your risen glory.
Praise be to you!
Holy Spirit, by your light
You guide this world towards the Father’s love and accompany creation as it groans in travail.
You also dwell in our hearts
and you inspire us to do what is good.
Praise be to you!
Triune Lord, wondrous community of infinite love, teach us to contemplate you in the beauty of the universe, for all things speak of you.
Awaken our praise and thankfulness
for every being that you have made.
Give us the grace to feel profoundly joined to everything that is.
God of love, show us our place in this world as channels of your love for all the creatures of this earth, for not one of them is forgotten in your sight.
Enlighten those who possess power and money that they may avoid the sin of indifference, that they may love the common good, advance the weak, and care for this world in which we live.
The poor and the earth are crying out.
O Lord, seize us with your power and light, help us to protect all life, to prepare for a better future, for the coming of your Kingdom of justice, peace, love and beauty.
Praise be to you!
Meadow Meaning – A Reflection by Brother Richard Hendrick OFM Cap
the blades of grass
you dare to call
the light fast lives
of tiny buzzing
hear the call of Divine
and give them
selves totally to
grow towards the
And what of
Forest Faith – a reflection by Brother Richard Hendrick Ofm Cap
When the edges of my mind fray,
and the golden sacred thread
seems pulled, gathered, caught
upon the briar of my broken being,
and my hearthome holds too much
behind its ancient doors
so there is no breathing space at all,
I take myself to the woods.
For there I become not young,
but small again and feel the rising
ocean tides of sap lull me at last
into the deep greening rest of soul
only the old tall ones know
the sky touchers, earth drinkers
we call in our dull infant speech, simply Trees.
So I place my foot upon the winding path
and dew the way with tears and sometimes even blood,
until their windleaf song sounds soul deep, and slows and halts me long enough
to feel their verdant canopy of calm,
and I greet them then,
as the keepers of the way they are;
the blessed Beech and noble Holly,
the Oak and Ash and Thorn,
grey brown brothers and sisters
of the branching dance of being.
Their familiar oldness a reminder
of my passing place
in all this; they leaflean down
to teach me once again the way of prayer
as being and being as prayer,
allowing the holy breath to play along my spine as within their trunked tallness
while standing through the shifting seasons
they grow slowly, imperceptibly, always,
until flower and fruiting follow in their turn,
then the seeming fall, asleep asunder for awhile,
as my life now flutters, cast upon the winds
lost in wildness, a wintered leaf, dry and brittle,
but here in their stately shadows
daring to read the scripture of their state,
and hear their prophecy proclaimed in stillness; that old roots dig deep and deeper still, that branches bend so not to break and that there is a joy in storms when yielded to.
So for a while I breathe the sylvan air
and greet the great and green,
these guardians of natural grace,
and then when I have walked long enough to become reminded, rewilded and rehomed in heart, I bow in thanks
and leave the woods to plant their sainted seeds throughout my world and life;
to feel a forest grow within
and make the faith feathered one