“Creation is God’s intricate work of art, and human beings are privileged to be placed within it. In this Season of Creation, we celebrate God the Creator, we thank God for the extraordinary riches of his grace. But we also come in sorrow for the way we have defaced creation and misused it for our own ends. In this Season, let’s find again a true vision of what being made in the image of God and caring for creation can mean, and commit ourselves to action”. Most Rev. and Rt. Hon Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury
Each year, tens of thousands of Christians around the world celebrate the Season of Creation. It runs from September 1st, the World Day of Prayer for Creation, to October 4th, the feast of St Francis of Assisi.
The Season of Creation was instigated by the Orthodox church in 1989 and taken up by many other faith traditions and ecumenical bodies including the World Council of Churches. Since 2009, the Anglican Consultative Council has called on provinces to include the Season of Creation in their yearly pattern of worship. This year, nine church leaders from different faith traditions have, for the first time, written a joint letter urging Christians to mark the season. They write, “This season offers a precious opportunity to pause in the midst of our day-to-day lives and contemplate the fabric of life into which we are woven. As the environmental crisis deepens, we Christians are urgently called to witness to our faith by taking bold action to preserve the gift we share.” The full text and signatories to the letter are below.
We have a host of resources to help you celebrate the Season of Creation. On the right you will find links to a worship resource with a collect, intercessions and Eucharistic prayers for the Season of Creation in English, Spanish and Portuguese.
In addition, the Anglican Communion Environmental Network (ACEN) has produced a wonderful Season of Creation resource to help churches celebrate the season. You can download it through the resources links on this page in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French. You will find many more inspiring resources for the season on the ACEN website (here) and also on the ecumenical Season of Creation website here.
Letters for Creation is an initiative of the Archbishop of Canterbury to create a global conversation on climate change and biodiversity loss and the challenges they pose across the Communion. The Archbishop asked senior clergy to share their thoughts on two questions: ‘What does the Care for God’s Creation mean in your Province?’ and ‘What do you want to say to the Anglican Communion about the Care for our Common Home?’ The responses come from a diverse range of countries and contexts.
You will also find reflective prayers suitable for the season on our website:
- A visual prayer for the earth – available in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French
- Prayers for the Earth based on the Anglican fifth mark of mission
- A Christian Prayer in Union with Creation
- A visual guide to biodiversity
- Oceans of Plastic – a resource for Sunday Schools Written by ACEN/Green Anglicans
And you can find more reflective PowerPoints on the Time for Creation page of the website of our good friend Christian Concern for One World.
Letter in support of the Season of Creation
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
“But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this?” (Job 12:7-9, NRSV)
Once every year, from September 1 to October 4, members of the Christian family set aside time to deepen our relationship with the Creator, each other, and all of creation. This is the Season of Creation, which began in 1989 with the first recognition of the day of prayer for creation by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of the Orthodox Church, and which is now embraced by the wider ecumenical family.
During the Season of Creation, we join together to rejoice in the good gift of creation and reflect on how we care for it. This season offers a precious opportunity to pause in the midst of our day-to-day lives and contemplate the fabric of life into which we are woven.
As the environmental crisis deepens, we Christians are urgently called to witness to our faith by taking bold action to preserve the gift we share. As the psalmist sings, “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.” (Psalm 24:1-2) During the Season of Creation, we ask ourselves: Do our actions honor the Lord as Creator? Are there ways to deepen our faith by protecting “the least of these,” who are most vulnerable to the consequences of environmental degradation?
We invite you to join us on a journey of faith that challenges and rewards us with fresh perspective and deeper bonds of love. United in our sincere wish to protect creation and all those who share it, we join hands across denominations as sisters and brothers in Christ. During this season, we walk together towards greater stewardship of our place in creation.
“O Lord my God, you are very great! You are clothed with splendor and majesty, covering yourself with light as with a garment, stretching out the heavens like a tent.” (Psalm 104:1-2)
With you, we give thanks for the community of believers around the world that is bringing love to creation this season, and we praise the Creator for the gifts we share.
In God’s grace,
Archbishop Job of Telmessos, Permanent Representative of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to the WCC, on behalf of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew
Most Rev. & Rt. Hon Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury
Cardinal Peter K.A. Turkson, Prefect, Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development
Dr. Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, General Secretary of World Council of Churches
Rev. Dr. Chris Ferguson, General Secretary, World Communion of Reformed Churches
Bishop Efraim Tendero, Secretary-General of the World Evangelical Alliance
Rev. Dr. Martin Junge, General Secretary, Lutheran World Federation
Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, General Secretary, Act Alliance
Fr. Heikki Huttunen, General Secretary, Conference of European Churches