World Day of Prayer 2018 focuses on climate change
Photo by Tali Folkins: Beth Lorimer, Ecological Justice Program Coordinator for KAIROS Canada, delivers a reflection at a service for World Day of Prayer 2018 at St. Andrew’s United Church, Toronto, Friday, March 2.
Our exploitative attitude toward creation has separated us from God—but we can restore our relationship with God by being better stewards of the earth, congregants at a Toronto service for World Day of Prayer 2018 heard Friday, March 2.
“When we break harmony with creation, we, too, break harmony with the Creator,” Beth Lorimer, ecological justice program co-ordinator for ecumenical social justice group KAIROS Canada said in a reflection in the service.
However, Lorimer said, “Living a life that is mindful of creation and that seeks not to overconsume what the Creator has given us—one that recognizes the inherent value of each thing and compels us to use what is given sustainably—will reaffirm our interconnectedness and bring us into closer relationship with God.”
Randy Woodley, a Cherokee theologian, once speculated that the Creator made the earth in a way that was “unhurried and leisurely,” and that he “took time to strike balance, seek wholeness and interconnectedness,” Lorimer said. In contrast, however, in the “mass-produced and homogenous” world of today, “life seems at times the opposite of unhurried, our actions the opposite of thoughtful and balanced,” with creation seen as valuable not in itself, but in how it can serve us. And that creation, she said, is now under threat in various ways as the result of human activity.
Nevertheless, there is reason to hope that we may learn to live in a more ecologically just way, taking better care of both the earth and ourselves by consuming only what we need and what the earth can sustain, she said.
Friday’s service was hosted by the Women’s Inter-Church Council of Canada (WICC), an ecumenical prayer group that co-ordinates the World Day of Prayer in Canada, and was held at St. Andrew’s United Church, Toronto.
The World Day of Prayer, which dates back almost 100 years, is an ecumenical event in which Christians in more than 170 countries come together to pray for issues affecting women and children. The service is written by people from a different participating country each year.
Originally published in the Anglican Journal, on March 2, 2018.