Praying at Home Today: Thursday 16 September 2021
Praying at home today:
The Season of Creation
A universal communion
For four weeks, following the first Sunday in September until the day before Harvest Sunday, we will be focussing on the season of creation, in preparation for the COP26 Climate Conference in Glasgow.
Although we will follow our usual form of prayer, our readings and some other material will follow those given in Daily Prayer of the Scottish Episcopal Church for this Season of Creation.
This is a good time to be grateful for our beautiful, yet fragile world, and to dedicate ourselves anew as faithful stewards to its protection.
A warm welcome to PrayingAtHome.com, where you can find worship resources for praying at home today or wherever you are.
We hope these readings, prayers, music and the short reflection will help you stay in touch with the Church and to sustain you on your journey through life.
If this is your first visit to this website, then you might like to read about the common elements and the suggested structure for each day’s prayer.
Opening to the Word
You can spend a few moments in silence,
focussing on your breathing
to become more mindful of the present moment
and to open yourself more fully
to God’s presence within you.
O God, you created the heavens and spread out the earth
You gave breath to all people
and spirit to everything which walks on the earth.
The Lord is a great God, and a sovereign above all gods.
In God’s hand are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are God’s also.
The sea is God’s, for God made it, and God’s hand formed the dry land.
O come, let us worship and bow down,
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth;
break forth into joyous song and sing praises.
Jubilate Deo, omnis terra;
cantate, et exsultate, et psallite.
Poussez des cris de joie en l’honneur de l’Eternel, habitants de toute la terre!
Faites éclater votre allégresse et chantez!
The Liturgy of the Word
Here is today’s Bible reading.
During these four weeks of the Season of Creation, I’m reading Pope Francis’s encyclical letter Laudato si’, mi’ Signore – Praise to you, my Lord (LS) – and I hope to share with you a few nuggets from the Church’s social teaching on Creation and our stewardship of this planet we call our home.
In this second week, he explores what theology (Faith seeking understanding) has to say, with particular reference to the Bible (LS62).
A universal communion
As parts of Creation, called into being by the Father, all living creatures are
linked by unseen bonds and together form a kind of universal family, a sublime communion which fills us with a sacred, affectionate and humble respect…
God has joined us so closely to the world around us that we can feel the desertification of the soil almost as a physical ailment, and the extinction of a species as a painful disfigurement (LS89).
This doesn’t put all creatures on the same level nor does it imply some sort of divinisation of the earth; such an attitude would prevent us from working on it and protecting it in its fragility.
As beings endowed with reason and the ability to know ourselves, human beings have a special place in creation; therefore, there is something wrong if we have more zeal for protecting other species than we have in defending the dignity that all human beings share in equal measure. This is not to say that we condone irresponsible behaviour towards other creatures but
we should be particularly indignant at the enormous inequalities in our midst, whereby we continue to tolerate some considering themselves more worthy than others.
We fail to see that some are mired in desparate and degrading poverty, with no way out, while others have not the faintest idea of what to do with their possessions (LS90).
A sense of deep communion with the rest of nature cannot be real if our hearts lack tenderness, compassion and concern for our fellow human beings.
It is clearly inconsistent to combat trafficking in endangered species while remaining completely indifferent to human trafficking, unconcerned about the poor, or undertaking to destroy another human being deemed unwanted. This compromises the very meaning of our struggle for the sake of the environment (LS91).
Again, he reminds us that
Everything is connected.
Concern for the environment is intrinsically linked to a sincere love for our fellow human beings and an unwavering commitment to resolving the problems of society (LS91).
This sense of fraternity can exclude nothing and no one. Maltreating our fellow creatures sooner or later leads to our maltreatment of one another (LS92).
As the Dominican bishops wrote in 1987,
Peace, justice and the preservation of creation are three absolutely interconnected themes, which cannot be separated and treated individually without once again falling into reductionism (i.e. asking small questions of specific issues rather than the bigger issue of why we behave as we do) (LS92).
Francis concludes this section by saying
Everything is related,
and we human beings are united
as brothers and sisters
on a wonderful pilgrimage,
woven together by the love
God has for each of his creatures
and which also unites us
in fond affection with
brother sun, sister moon,
brother river and mother earth.
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The Lord, God of hosts, touches the earth and it melts,
and all who live in it mourn.
And all of it rises like the Nile, and sinks again, like the Nile of Egypt;
The Lord builds upper chambers in the heavens,
and founds vaults upon the earth;
And calls for the waters of the sea,
and pours them out upon the surface of the earth.
Music for reflection
As the Church celebrates the life and mission of Ninian of Whithorn (c430),
we continue our journey in faith today:
- for all preparing for the COP26 Climate Conference
- for those in most danger from the climate emergency
- for those in war-torn countries of the world
- for all who inspire us.
(In Holy Trinity, Stirling, we invite you to pray today
for all at St Ninians Old Parish Church, Stirling.)
For all who have asked for our prayers.
a moment of silence
Pray for us all
The Lord’s Prayer
We can say the Lord’s Prayer in any language or version we choose.
Here it is, in English, Latin and French.
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your Kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those
who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom,
the power and the glory are yours,
now and for ever.
Pater noster, qui es in cælis;
sanctificetur nomen tuum:
adveniat regnum tuum;
fiat voluntas tua,
sicut in cælo, et in terra.
Panem nostrum cotidianum da nobis hodie:
et dimitte nobis debita nostra,
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris:
et ne nos inducas in tentationem:
sed libera nos a malo.
Quia tuum est regnum,
et potestas, et gloria, in saecula.
Notre Père, qui es aux cieux,
que ton nom soit sanctifié,
que ton règne vienne,
que ta volonté soit faite sur la terre comme au ciel.
Donne-nous aujourd’hui notre pain de ce jour.
Pardonne-nous nos offenses,
comme nous pardonnons aussi à ceux qui nous ont offensés.
Et ne nous laisse pas entrer en tentation
mais délivre-nous du Mal.
Car c’est à toi qu’appartiennent le règne,
la puissance et la gloire
pour les siècles des siècles. Amen.
God Most High,
maker of heaven and earth,
you created humankind in your own image
and entrusted the whole world to human care:
give us grace to serve you faithfully,
that we might be trustworthy stewards of your creation,
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Collect for the Season of Creation
Returning to the world
Let us bless the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
Thank you for joining us in praying at home.
Oremus pro invicem.
In these strange times, we are called to trust
* You can find more organ music from Holy Trinity Church, Stirling
on Alistair Warwick‘s website and on SoundCloud
There are several books by Brother Roger of the Taizé Community from many booksellers.
You can buy The Complete Chronicles of Narnia at Bookshop.org
Other worship resources
- Worship resources from Holy Trinity Church, Stirling, Scotland
- Music for reflection
- RSCM: Hymn for the Day and Sunday Self-Service
- Liturgy resources from New Zealand – Aotearoa
- Prayer live from Taizé
- CCC – Christ, Covid, Community (Facebook Group)
- Live-streamed liturgy from Pluscarden Abbey, Scotland
Praying at Home Today: Acknowledgements
The lectionary for weekdays is taken from the Vanderbilt Divinity Library.
In that lectionary, the readings are in the following order: Old Testament reading, Psalm, New Testament reading; we have changed the order to the more usual OT, Psalm and NT.
English Bible texts are usually from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicised Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993, 1995 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Latin Bible texts are from Biblia Sacra Vulgata, and are in the Public Domain.
French Bible texts are usually from Version Segond 21, copyright © 2007 Société Biblique de Genève by Société Biblique de Genève.
Images, unless otherwise stated, are from lockdown in Scotland, by Alistair Warwick.
Music engraved by The Art of Music.
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