Season of Creation

Season of Creation Begins with World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation

In 2015 Pope Francis asked Catholics to join with the Orthodox Church to celebrate the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. A number of other Christian churches had already joined them in it for a number of years. Now the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation is an annual event in the Catholic Church too. In fact Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew joined together to make this statement for 2017.

As Pope Francis explains, it is a “significant occasion for prayer, reflection, conversion and the adoption of appropriate lifestyles.” Read his message for the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation here.

Celebrated on 1 September, the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation now marks the beginning of the Season of Creation.

Pope Francis’ Message for the Season of Creation 2018

How will you respond to Pope Francis’ message this year?

A Catholic Season of Creation

The idea of celebrating a Season of Creation began in the Lutheran Church in Adelaide, Australia in 2000. Now many different churches all over the world take part. In 2016 the Catholic Church joined in.

The season embraces the four Sundays of September before the Feast of St Francis of Assisi – 4 October. Norman Habel explains:

“The season of Creation offers an opportunity for churches to introduce new visual elements into their worship and to be ecumenical and connected with creation in a particular context.”

Read more about the history of the Season of Creation here.

2017 Catholic Resources Year A

The Columban Mission Institute’s Centre for Peace, Ecology and Justice provides excellent resources for the Season of Creation for Catholic congregations and schools. They include prayer, reflection and action ideas and are linked to the readings in the Catholic lectionary. Download their resources here.

2016 Catholic Resources Year C

Download Catholic resources for the Season of Creation 2016 here.

More on Catholic Teaching

Find out more about Catholic teaching on integral ecology here.

Learn about Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’ on the care of our common home here.

World Environment Day – 5 June

World Environment Day has been Celebrated Since 1972

Did you know that World Environment Day has been celebrated since 1972? In that year the United Nations convened the first major international conference on environmental issues. Because the Conference was held in Stockholm, Sweden, it became known as the Stockholm Conference. Pope Paul VI was there.

Perhaps you are too young to remember 1972, or perhaps you have only become concerned about environment issues in recent years? Certainly concern about ecology has become mainstream rather than a fringe issue in the last couple of decades. Today most people consider that addressing climate change and developing a more sustainable economy are urgent issues. Indeed, today we understand that the issue is not just about protecting the environment but rather promoting integral ecology. The social, economic and environmental crises are interrelated.

Celebrating World Environment Day

So, how might we celebrate World Environment Day? Here are some ideas:
1. Take the time to re-read Pope Francis’ encyclical on care for our common home, Laudato Si’, or at least part of it.
2. Offer this prayer from Laudato Si’ by yourself, or with others.
3. Identify one more way you can shift your purchasing to more ecologically sustainable products.
4. Write to your political representatives to encourage them to address climate change and promote a sustainable economy.
5. Take care to be conscious of the beauty of the natural world as you go about your business today.
6. Affirm and encourage efforts in your household or workplace to reduce waste, to reuse and to recycle.
7. Use some of the resources that we produced for Laudato Si’ Week last year in your personal prayer and reflection this week.