Prayer Service inspired by Laudato Si
Care For Our Common Home 

Service presented by 3rd Year students of Mater Dei Institute
Music led by the Dublin Diocesan Music Group

Prelude     Four Seasons – Autumn (Antonio Vivaldi)
“LAUDATO SI’, mi’ Signore” – “Praise be to you, my Lord” is the name of the recent letter of Pope Francis that invites us to consider our shared responsibility for the world in which we live and our connectedness with all living beings and the all the gifts of creation. The letter begins in this way: ‘In the words of the beautiful canticle, Saint Francis of Assisi reminds us that our common home is like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens her arms to embrace us. “Praise be to you, my Lord, through our Sister, Mother Earth, who sustains and governs us, and who produces various fruit with coloured flowers and herbs”. (Laudato Si 1.)

Procession with Plants, Flowers and Fruits of the Harvest

Song  All Creatures Of Our God and King (Arr. R. Vaughan Williams)
All sing: All creatures of our God and King
Lift up your voice and with us sing, Alleluia! Alleluia!
Thou burning sun with golden beam,
Thou silver moon with softer gleam!

Refrain   O praise Him! O praise Him! Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Thou flowing water, pure and clear,
Make music for thy Lord to hear, O praise Him! Alleluia!
Thou fire so masterful and bright,
That givest us both warmth and light.   Refrain

Dear mother earth, who day by day
Unfoldest blessings on our way, O praise Him! Alleluia!
The flowers and fruits that in thee grow,
Let them His glory also show.    Refrain 

Let all things their Creator bless,
And worship Him in humbleness,
O praise Him! Alleluia! Praise, praise the Father, praise the Son,
And praise the Spirit, Three in One!   Refrain


Opening Prayer     Let us pray,
All say:   God of all life from whose gracious hand all creatures are fed: humble our hearts in wonder of your creation inspire in us praise for the good things you give and lead us into peace with all that you have made. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 Psalm 64   In You Creation Finds Its Joy (Ronan McDonagh)
All sing:  In you creation finds its joy, you have clothed it in your beauty; Alleluia.

A Prayer for our Earth (L.S. 246)
All say:   All-powerful God, you are present in the whole universe and in the smallest of your creatures. You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.

Reader 1  Pour out upon us the power of your love, that we may protect life and beauty.
Fill us with peace, that we may live  as brothers and sisters, harming no one.
All say:  O God of the poor, help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth, so precious in your eyes.

Reader 2 Bring healing to our lives,  that we may protect the world and not prey on it, that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction.
All say: Touch the hearts of those who look only for gain at the expense of the poor and the earth.

Reader 3  Teach us to discover the worth of each thing, to be filled with awe and contemplation, to recognize that we are profoundly united with every creature as we journey towards your infinite light.
All say: We thank you for being with us each day. Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle for justice, love and peace.

Psalm 136   Love Is Never Ending (Marty Haugen)
All sing:   For your love is never ending

This Sister Mother Earth now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible use and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her. We have come to see ourselves as her lords and masters, entitled to plunder her at will. The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life.

This is why the earth herself, burdened and laid waste, is among the most abandoned and maltreated of our poor; she “groans in travail” We have forgotten that we ourselves are dust of the earth. Our very bodies are made up of her elements, we breathe her air and we receive life and refreshment from her waters. (L.S. 2)

Instrumental  Four Seasons – Winter (Antonio Vivaldi)

Patriarch Bartholomew has spoken in particular of the need for each of us to repent of the ways we have harmed the planet, for “inasmuch as we all generate small ecological damage”, we are called to acknowledge “our contribution, smaller or greater, to the disfigurement and destruction of creation”. For “to commit a crime against the natural world is a sin against ourselves and a sin against God” (L.S. 8)

Litany of Repentance
Human beings have sinned against creation. Let us ask for forgiveness.

Human beings have helped to destroy the biological diversity of God’s creation.
All sing: Kyrie eleison (Plainchant)

Human beings have degraded the integrity of the earth by causing change in its climate.
All sing: A Thiarna Déan Trócaire (Seán Ó Riada)

Human beings have stripped the earth of its natural forests or destroyed its wetlands.
All sing: Kyrie eleison (William Byrd)

Human beings have contaminated the earth’s waters, its land, its air and its life.
All sing: Kyrie eleison (Taizé)

Instrumental  Lament (Traditional) 

Prayer of Transformation
In the words of Patriarch Bartholomew let us turn to the God of tenderness: (L.S. 9)
All say:      Where there is consumption let there be sacrifice.
Where there is greed let there be generosity.
Where there is wastefulness let there be a spirit of sharing.
Grant that we may give rather than simply give up.
May we move gradually away from what we want to what God’s world needs.
Free us from fear, greed and compulsion.
Help us to appreciate that the divine and human meet in the slightest detail in the seamless garment of God’s creation, in the last speck of dust on the planet.
We ask this in the name of Jesus, our light and our hope. Amen.

Instrumental Four Seasons – Spring (Antonio Vivaldi)

 Saint Francis – Icon of Hope
I believe that Saint Francis is the example par excellence of care for the vulnerable and of an integral ecology lived out joyfully and authentically. He was particularly concerned for God’s creation and for the poor and outcast. He loved, and was deeply loved for his joy, his generous self-giving, his openheartedness. He was a mystic and a pilgrim who lived in simplicity and in wonderful harmony with God, with others, with nature and with himself. He shows us just how inseparable the bond is between concern for nature, justice for the poor, commitment to society, and interior peace. (L.S.10)

Song   Brother Sun, Sister Moon (Donovan Leitch)

Saint Francis of Assisi helps us to see that an integral ecology calls for openness to categories which transcend the language of mathematics and biology, and take us to the heart of what it is to be human. Just as happens when we fall in love with someone, whenever he would gaze at the sun, the moon or the smallest of animals, he burst into song, drawing all other creatures into his praise. He communed with all creation, even preaching to the flowers, inviting them “to praise the Lord, just as if they were endowed with reason”. His response to the world around him was so much more than intellectual appreciation or economic calculus, for to him each and every creature was a sister united to him by bonds of affection. That is why he felt called to care for all that exists. His disciple Saint Bonaventure tells us that, “from a reflection on the primary source of all things, filled with even more abundant piety, he would call creatures, no matter how small, by the name of ‘brother’ or ‘sister’. The poverty and austerity of Saint Francis were no mere veneer of asceticism, but something much more radical: a refusal to turn reality into an object simply to be used and controlled. (L.S.11)

Song  Ag Críost An Síol (Seán Ó Riada)
All sing: Ag Críost an síol, ag Críost an fómhar,
In iothlainn Dé go dtugtar sinn.
Ag Críost an mhuir, ag Críost an t-iasc,
I líonta Dé go gcastar sinn
Ó fhás go haois, is ó aois go bás,
Do dhá láimh, a Chríost, anall tharainn.
Ó bhás go críoch, ní críoch ach athfhás,
I bParthas na nGrást go rabhaimid.

Canticle of Praise
When we can see God reflected in all that exists, our hearts are moved to praise the Lord for all his creatures and to worship him in union with them. This sentiment finds magnificent expression in the hymn of Saint Francis of Assisi: (L.S. 87)

All say:   Praised be you, my Lord, with all your creatures, especially Sir Brother Sun, who is the day and through whom you give us light.  And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour; and bears a likeness of you, Most High.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars, in heaven you formed them clear and precious and beautiful.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Brother Wind, and through the air, cloudy and serene, and every kind of weather through whom you give sustenance to your creatures.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Water, who is very useful and humble and precious and chaste.
Praised be you, my Lord, through Brother Fire,  through whom you light the night,  and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong”.

Song    Canticle of the Sun (Marty Haugen)


Song The Peace Of The Earth (Guatamalan – Arr. J. Bell/M. Haugen)
All sing: The peace of the earth be with you,
the peace of the heavens, too.
The peace of the rivers be with you,
the peace of the oceans too.
Deep peace flowing over you,
God’s peace growing in you.

Everything is interconnected, and this invites us to develop a spirituality of that global solidarity which flows from the mystery of the Trinity. (L.S. 240) 

All sing: The peace of the earth be with you…
We require a new and universal solidarity. As the bishops of Southern Africa have stated: “Everyone’s talents and involvement are needed to redress the damage caused by human abuse of God’s creation”. (L.S. 14)

All sing: The peace of the earth be with you…
The Christian leaders in Japan, for their part, made a thought-provoking observation: “To sense each creature singing the hymn of its existence is to live joyfully in God’s love and hope”.(L.S. 85)

All sing: The peace of the earth be with you…
The New Zealand bishops asked what the commandment “Thou shall not kill” means when “twenty percent of the world’s population consumes resources at a rate that robs the poor nations and future generations of what they need to survive”. (L.S. 95)GARY

All sing: The peace of the earth be with you…
The Christian leaders in Portugal have called upon us to acknowledge this obligation of justice: ‘the environment is part of a logic of receptivity. It is on loan to each generation, which must then hand it on to the next.’ (L.S. 159)

All sing: The peace of the earth be with you…
A Christian Prayer in Union with Creation (L.S. 246)
All say: God, we praise you with all your creatures.  They came forth from your all-powerful hand; they are yours, filled with your presence and your tender love.

Reader 1
Praise be to you!
Son of God, Jesus, through you all things were made. You were formed in the womb of Mary our Mother, you became part of this earth, and you gazed upon this world with human eyes. Today you are alive in every creature in your risen glory.

Reader 2
Praise be to you!
Holy Spirit, by your light you guide this world towards the Father’s love and accompany creation as it groans in travail. You also dwell in our hearts  and you inspire us to do what is good.

Reader 3
Praise be to you!
Triune Lord, wondrous community of infinite love, teach us to contemplate you in the beauty of the universe, for all things speak of you.

Reader 4
Awaken our praise and thankfulness for every being that you have made.  Give us the grace to feel profoundly joined to everything that is.

Reader 5
God of love, show us our place in this world as channels of your love for all the creatures of this earth, for not one of them is forgotten in your sight.

Reader 6
Enlighten those who possess power and money that they may avoid the sin of indifference, that they may love the common good, advance the weak,  and care for this world in which we live.

All say: The poor and the earth are crying out. O Lord, seize us with your power and light,  help us to protect all life, to prepare for a better future, for the coming of your Kingdom of justice, peace, love and beauty. Praise be to you! Amen.

 Blessing of St. Columba
All say:  Be thou a bright flame before me,
be thou a guiding star above me,
be thou a smooth path below me,
be thou a kindly shepherd behind me,
today – tonight – and forever.

Song  Faithful Is The Lord (Liam Lawton)
All sing: Faithful is the Lord, our King
Let us all in glory sing
Ever praise in song and word
Holy, Holy, Holy Lord.

God of life and God of seed,
God of nations, lands and creeds,
God of Heaven, God of earth,
God made man in lowly birth.

Faithful is the…