A beautiful Collect

St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church chose its monthly Evensong service as its Preach-in service.   It was a beautiful service with a full choir, a wonderful guest sermon by Rev. Bill Thwing (and a delicious reception afterward!)  Thank you to all the people who made it happen, both for what you created, and for inviting members of the Creation Care Coalition of Centre County to join you. 

The Collect is a collective, responsive prayer connected to the message of the church day.   Should some of you be looking for inspiration for your own Preach In material, or your own prayers, here is the one Barbara Ballenger wrote for this evening:

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God.  For the departed land, the dying forests, the barren stretches of ocean, the melting ice caps and snow peaks, the rising sea levels, the thirsty and hungry creatures.  We pray:
Lord have mercy.

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God.  For the beautiful, complex and diverse sepcies that you have fashioned and that we have endangered.  For those lost to us forever, we pray:
Lord have mercy.

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God.   For all people overcome by drought, and flooding, and by shifts in season that destroy crops and dry up water sources.  For the countries that are most at reisk of environmental disaster caused by climate change: for Haiti and Bangladesh, Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe and Madagascar, Cambodia and Mozambique, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi and the Philippines.  May they find ways to adapt, and resources to survive the damage already done.  We pray:
Lord have mercy. 

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God, in thanks for the return of the rain to Somalia where tens of thousands of people fled drought this year, in search of food and water.  For those who return to work the land and for those who did not survive the journey.  We pray:
Lord have mercy.

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God, where environmental disasters displace more people than war.  Where the poorest, who use the least of the world’s fossil fuels, are hit first and worst by climate change.  We pray:
Lord have mercy.

We pray for the healing of your creation, oh God.  You who called the rich young man to give up everything to follow you, call us now to give up that which harms and threatens the world you have made.  For what we have done, and for what we have failed to do, we pray:
Lord have mercy.

Creator God, hear our prayer.  We do not wish to be like the rich young man, who finds the price of everlasting life too high.  We need your grace.  And eyes to see the consequences of our ways.  And ears to hear the cry of those who suffer.  And hearts that beak with love.  Grant that we might turn the rising tide and help your world to heal.
Amen.