Prayers for Paris: Action and Reflection
“God of Glory, God of Grace, we lament the destruction that our greed, consumerism, and endless pursuit of 'more' have wrought upon your beautiful creation.
"We repent for the misguided choices that we have made and the resulting fragility, devastation, and spoiling of your earth, your air, your seas, and your creatures. Open our eyes, Lord, that we might change our ways and follow your path.”
These are a few of the words of the prayer service that Sister Thérèse Meunier, Congregational Leader, CSJ & Ministry Director, Social Justice, Peace and Care of Earth, shared with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Toronto community at Prayers for Paris on November 29.
Responding to one of the congregation’s core values – caring for our wounded earth – Sisters and Associates gathered together to create a powerful bond of prayer and goodwill which was geared to support the United Nations Conference on Climate Change or COP 21. “We pray for all those gathered in Paris this week…that our leaders will have the courage to take immediate action on the issue of climate change for the sake of all life.”
Sister Pat Dowling, CSJ was one of the Sisters who joined the service. “Being at the prayer service that Sunday afternoon was really good for us,” she says. “It was very positive to have a green ribbon as a remembrance to pray all these days. Symbols are so very important.”
CSJ Associate Ursula Matthews also attended. “We prayed for victims of climate change and for the world leaders who have it in their power to bring about regulations around climate change," she says. “[After attending], I thought of a relevant quote: ‘We cannot change the world but we can, as individuals, evoke change within our own homes, our families and our communities.’”
This powerful yet peaceful prayer service is just one example of the CSJ community’s ongoing commitment to nurture kinship with neighbours and to care for our wounded earth.