Jubilee for the Earth: Saint Francis

As Christians we wish to contribute to resolving the ecological crisis which humanity is presently experiencing.  In doing so, we must first rediscover in our own rich spiritual history the deepest motivations for our concern for the care of creation.  We need always to keep in mind that, for believers in Jesus Christ, the Word of God who became man for our sake, ‘the life of the Spirit is not dissociated from the body or from nature or from worldly realities, but lives in and with them in common with all that surrounds us.'”

Letter of His Holiness Pope Francis for the Establishment of the ‘World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation,’ August 6, 2015

Reflection

The psalms praise God for all creation, the hills and the trees, the sea and the wind, the heavens. Saint Francis modeled right relating to God’s creatures. Creation Spirituality honors the work of the Creator with awe, gratitude, and with treating our Creator’s gifts lovingly.

Action

Ask Saint Francis to help you be more mindful of God’s creation so that you can be more awe-filled and grateful. In some way be more loving, perhaps by being less wasteful or by volunteering to care for animals or by donating to an organization that helps the environment, such as the Amazon Conservation Association.

Prayer

Let us pray.

O God, it is you who causes the grass to grow and the water to fill the lake. We ask you to bless this land of the traditional boundaries of our parish, Saint Patrick Church on Bridge.

Let us lift our hands to the north.

Bless our lake.
Bless the fish within it.
Bless the birds and insects and butterflies above it.
Bless the water.
Help us do what is necessary to keep the water clean and fruitful.

Let us lift our hands to the east.

Bless all the land to West 29th and West 25th.
Especially bless the soil.
Bless all our yards.
Bless the land night and day.

Let us turn our hands to the south.

Bless all the land to Train Avenue.
Especially bless the plants and trees,
and bless our homes.
Bless the land through autumn, winter, spring and summer.

Let us turn our hands to the west.

Bless all the land to West 53rd and West 54th.
Especially bless the living creatures, wild and tame.
Thank you for blessing our land in the past.
Bless the land in the present and throughout the future.

May God who established the dance of creation,
who marveled at the lilies of the field,
who transforms chaos to order,
lead us to transform our lives and the Church,
to reflect God’s glory in creation.

Amen.

—Kate Campbell