Each year, tens of thousands of Christians around the world celebrate the Season of Creation, which runs from September 1st, the World Day of Prayer for Creation, to October 4th, the feast of St Francis of Assisi.
During the Season of Creation, local churches take part in a host of activities, from litter picks and tree planting initiatives to special services and campaigning activities.
This year’s focus of the Season of Creation is “Protecting the Web of Life”. In a joint letter urging Christians to mark the season, church leaders from different faith traditions write, “We are part of a single, wondrously complex web of life that is woven by God… During the Season of Creation, we unite as one family in Christ, celebrating the bonds we share with each other and with ‘every living creature on earth.’ (Genesis 9:10) The Christian family celebrates the season by spending time in prayer, considering ways to more sustainably inhabit our common home, and lifting our voices in the public sphere”. Read the full letter here.
The letter’s signatories include the Anglican bishops Mark Macdonald, Archbishop of National Indigenous Anglican Church of Canada; Marc Andrus, Episcopal Diocese of California; Nick Holtam, Bishop of Salisbury and Chair of Church of England Environment Working Group; and Paulo Ueti, the Anglican Alliance’s Theological Advisor & Latin American Regional Director.
The letter continues, “We lament that God’s creatures are disappearing from the Earth at a rate we can scarcely comprehend. From humble insects to majestic mammals, from microscopic plankton to towering trees, creatures from across God’s dominion are becoming extinct, and may never be seen again.
“This devastation is, in itself, a tragic loss. Contemplation on this loss and prayers for its stopping is the theme we would want to suggest as a particular focus for this year’s prayers. What we experience is not only the loss. It is also unjust, as the most vulnerable among us suffer most deeply as the web of life begins to unravel. Our faith calls us to respond to this crisis with the urgency born of moral clarity.”
Writing in the Season of Creation resources prepared by Green Anglicans, Revd. Rachel Mash, Environmental Coordinator for the Anglican Church of Southern Africa, said: “We were called to be stewards of creation, and we have failed. The younger generation are rising up now and calling for the earth to be healed. Let us join them and work together to protect the web of life which sustains us all.”
Since 2009, the Anglican Consultative Council has called on provinces to include the Season of Creation in their yearly pattern of worship. ACC17, which met this year in Hong Kong, reaffirmed the Anglican Communion’s commitment to marking the Season of Creation, adding a call to member churches to “promote a day during the Season of Creation as a day of public repentance” and “incorporate creation care into liturgical practice” (ACC resolution A17:05)
During the Season of Creation, we will be sharing daily reflections on our Facebook page and new Instagram account. Please do react to, share and comment on our posts. Interacting with our posts will help them reach more people.
On 16th September there will be a webinar on biodiversity, moderated by Rachel Mash.
A liturgy for the season, prepared by Green Anglicans can be downloaded here. This wonderful resource includes sermons for each Sunday of the Season of Creation based on the appointed Revised Common Lectionary readings.
We have a host of visual prayers and reflections in our own Prayer and Worship section.
Of particular relevance is the visual guide to biodiversity. This series of PowerPoints or videos explores what biodiversity is and why Christians should care about it. In eight downloadable parts, it covers:
The Anglican Alliance exists to connect, equip and inspire the worldwide Anglican family to work for a world free of poverty and injustice, and to safeguard creation.
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