Praying at Home Today: Friday 17 September 2021

Praying at Home Today: Friday 17 September 2021

Praying at home today:
The Season of Creation
The common destination of goods

Climate Sunday logo
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. Everything’s optional!
Labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral, France

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.

Isaiah 42:5

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!

Psalm 95:3-6

Short reading

Where can I go from your spirit?
Or where can I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there;
if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.

Quo ibo a spiritu tuo?
et quo a facie tua fugiam?
Si ascendero in caelum, tu illic es;
si descendero in infernum, ades.

Où pourrais-je aller loin de ton Esprit,
où pourrais-je fuir loin de ta présence?
Si je monte au ciel, tu es là;
si je me couche au séjour des morts, te voilà.

Psalm 138(139):7-8

The Liturgy of the Word

Here is today’s Bible reading.

Short reflection

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).

The common destination of goods

Believers and non-believers alike, with a few notable exceptions, essentially agree that our planet is a shared inheritance; its fruits are meant for everyone’s benefit.

For believers, this is about fidelity to the Creator, since God created the world for everyone.

Accordingly, every ecological approach must incorporate a social perspective, taking into account  the fundamental rights of the poor and underprivileged.

Private property, then, is subordinate to the universal destination of goods, and thus the right of everyone to their use. In other words, the good things that the earth produces are for everyone, and private property in the hands of a few cannot and must not take precedence over the basic human rights of everyone, especially the poor.

John Paul II wrote  that

God gave the earth to the whole human race for the sustenance of all its members, without excluding or favouring anyone (LS93).

These are strong words indeed!

Although the Church defends the legitimate right to private property, she also teaches no less clearly that there is always

“a social mortgage on all private property, in order that goods may serve the general purpose that God gave them.

Consequently,

it is not in accord with God’s plan that this gift be used in such a way that its benefits favour only a few (LS93).

(Some of our politicians need to read, learn and inwardly digest this social teaching of the Church if they are to continue to claim to be Christian.)

Proverbs 22:2 tells us that “the Lord is the maker of them all”, so, rich and poor alike, we have equal dignity.

This is no mere rhetoric; there are practical consequences, as the bishops of Paraguay wrote: 

Every campesino has a natural right to possess a reasonable allotment of land where they can establish their home, work for subsistence of their family and a secure life.

This right must be guaranteed so that its exercise is not illusory but real. That means that apart from the ownership of property, rural people must have access to means of technical education, credit, insurance, and markets (LS94).

(And yet billions of the world’s population have no bank account.)

The natural environment is a collective good; it belongs to everyone and is the responsibility of everyone. “If we make something our own, it is only to administer it for the good of all. If we do not, we burden our consciences with the weight of having denied the existence of others” (LS95).

That is what the New Zealand bishops asked what the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” means when “twenty percent of the world’s population consumes resources at a rate that robs the poor nations and future generation of what they need to survive (LS95).

Responsory

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.

Amos 9:5-10

Music for reflection

Prayer Suggestions

As the Church celebrates the life and inspiration of Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179),
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 The Revd Christoph Wutscher our Rector.)

For all who have asked for our prayers.

a moment of silence

Pray for us all
Amen.

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.
Amen.

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.
Amen.

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.

L’Église Catholique de Paris

Concluding prayer

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.

Benedicamus Domino.
Deo gratias.

Thank you for joining us in praying at home.
Oremus pro invicem.

In these strange times, we are called to trust

Labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral, France
* 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

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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