7 Sep

Season of Creation - From Assisi to Katowice

Children of the Seraphic Institute, joining in advocating for climate justice. Photo: LWF/ C. Rimmer
Children of the Seraphic Institute, joining in advocating for climate justice. Photo: LWF/ C. Rimmer

ASSISI, Italy/ GENEVA

Walking Together during the Season of Creation

From his home in Assisi, St. Francis wrote a prayer of thanksgiving called the Canticle of Creation, which begins “Praise be to you, my Lord, for all your creatures…” This past weekend, the LWF shared our prayer of thanksgiving as we celebrated the first Ecumenical Prayer for Creation in Assisi. The theme for 2018 is, “Walking together to COP 24”.

The Season of Creation begins on 1 September (the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation) and lasts until 4 October (the commemoration of St. Francis).  This is a “season” for the whole Church to pray, worship, act and advocate for the care of creation.  Since 2017, the LWF has been a member of the steering committee for the Season of Creation network, along with the Global Catholic Climate Movement, WCC, Anglican Communion, World Communion of Reformed Churches, World Evangelical Alliance, organizations such as ACT Alliance, A Rocha and others.  Our ecumenical solidarity during the Season of Creation makes visible the fact that we are not only united by one Lord, faith and baptism, but we are united by our most profound human identity as creatures, each called to care for the Creator’s creation. In this time of ecological crisis and climate change, much more than a merely technological or economic adaptation to mitigate climate change, we need a profound spiritual, ecological turning towards that fundamental ecological identity.

On 1 September, we were welcomed by the Bishop of Assisi to stand together.  We prayed where Francis and Clare learned to proclaim the true joy of loving and serving all creatures.  We began the Season of Creation by naming the tears that accompany the cries of creation and the climate vulnerable, represented by children with disabilities of the Seraphic Institute.  We confessed our ecological injustices. Then forgiven in Christ, we rose in solidarity with all creatures on our planet.  At the entrance to the Basilica of St. Francis, the LWF General Secretary joined other faith leaders to issue the declaration: Christians Unite in Calling for Eco-Justice.

Then together, with the children from the Seraphic Institute and climate pilgrims who gathered in Assisi, we took the first steps of our Walk Together towards a common witness to care for creation at this year’s COP 24 in Katowice, Poland.

It was a blessing to stand in the home of Francis and Clare with people of faith throughout all time and space, to embody our ecological metanoia, and bear public witness to our faithful vocation to serve and till the garden and all the blessed creatures therein. In this year’s blog, we invite you to use the resources below, and share the ecological reflections of your brothers and sisters from across our Lutheran communion, as we Walk Together in this Season of Creation.

It was a blessing to stand in the home of Francis and Clare with people of faith throughout all time and space, to embody our ecological metanoia, and bear public witness to our faithful vocation to serve and till the garden and all the blessed creatures therein.

Why not post pictures and stories of your congregation’s worship and action during this Season of Creation on social media with the #LWF and #SeasonofCreation? And to accompany you, we leave you with a verse from the hymn based on the Canticle of Creation, “O sisters, brothers, take your part/ and worship God with humble heart/ Alleluia! Alleluia!/ All creatures, bless the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Three in One/ Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!”

Biographical info

Rev. Dr Chad M. Rimmer is an eco-theologian, and the Study Secretary for Lutheran Theology and Practice in the Department of Theology and Public Witness of the LWF

Links

Season of Creation

 

 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this blog are those of the author, and not necessarily representative of Lutheran World Federation policy.