“Works of Love” is an adventure into what it means to love God and love our neighbor. Our belief is that these are not separate acts, but both are completely intertwined, our spirituality and our works of love.
Each week we will send you an email inviting you to consider a fundamental belief in the context of a different topic or issue. Join us as we pray, reflect, and take action!
The Season of Creation began on Sept. 1 and continues through Oct. 4 (the feast of St. Francis of Assisi). Christians around the world are encouraged to pray for the care of Creation and to consider ways to act.
This is an issue that affects nearly every aspect of our lives. The increasing threats to Creation and the natural world are well documented, as are the impacts of these changes on human life and society. Moreover, we know that it is the poor and marginalized around the world, who are enduring, and will continue to suffer, the effects most acutely.
We must also see this for the spiritual and moral crisis that it is — the product of a "throwaway culture" that views Creation as a disposable resource to be used without limitation. We must encourage our governments, work-places, communities, and families to act decisively. And we must seek the continuing conversion of our own hearts. What in our lives do we take for granted? Do we approach all of Creation in gratitude to God — even down to the little things like a tasty meal or a gallon of gas?
We call ourselves "contemplatives in action," because we understand that we are on a journey toward God, and until we meet Jesus face to face we always have more to do.
So, let us pray...
O God of the poor,
help us to rescue the abandoned
and forgotten of this earth,
who are so precious in your eyes...
God of love, show us our place in this world
as channels of your love
for all the creatures of this earth,
God of mercy, may we receive your forgiveness
and convey your mercy throughout our common home.
Praise be to you!
(from Pope Francis' message on the 2016 World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation.)
SEASON OF CREATION | Pope Francis
Pope Francis' 2019 Message for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation
In his message at the beginning of the Season of Creation, Pope Francis encourages each of us to see Creation as the gift of God that it is. He warns that our relationship to the natural world is often marked by selfishness and greed.
Read the full message.
"This is the season for letting our prayer be inspired anew by closeness to nature, which spontaneously leads us to give thanks to God the Creator."
"It is also a season to reflect on our lifestyles, and how our daily decisions about food, consumption, transportation, use of water, energy and many other material goods, can often be thoughtless and harmful. Too many of us act like tyrants with regard to creation. Let us make an effort to change and to adopt more simple and respectful lifestyles!"
Some more learning (in case you're interested)...
Laudato Si', Pope Francis
Food, Farming, and Faith, Norman Wirzba
Sr. Dorothy Stang, Martyr of the Amazon, John Dear (National Catholic Reporter)
Pope Francis ends his message for the Season of Creation with this prayer: "May God, “the lover of life” (Wis. 11:26), grant us the courage to do good without waiting for someone else to begin, or until it is too late."
So let's jump right in!
Opportunities to Do Something Greater:
We conclude by giving thanks to God, reflecting on how God was present to us and what God was inviting us to do.
(From the "Ecological Examen," created by the Jesuit Conference Office of Justice and Ecology and the Ignatian Solidarity Network.)
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.