The Season of Creation is a new liturgical season beginning September 1 and ending October 4, the Feast of St. Francis. Last summer, General Synod passed a resolution to adopt the Season of Creation as part of the Anglican Church of Canada's calendar. In this time the church celebrates and gives special focus to our life within God’s creation. But reverence for creation is not new to Christians. Throughout the history of the church, Christians have called creation or nature “God’s second book” alongside the Scriptures. So here are some resources to help us “read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest” the wonder in this season.
We still may have a few good weeks of weather and maybe the pandemic can still help propel us outside to pray. Following Dr. Bonnie Henry’s catchy line: “wider spaces with fewer spaces” -- gathering outside for worship could not only be safer but also inspiring.
Salal and Cedar, the diocesan watershed discipleship ministry, shares a locally rooted eucharistic prayer on their webpage here: http://salalandcedar.com/resources/liturgical-resources/eucharistic-prayer/
If you’re looking for a whole liturgy, you could try the PWRDF’s liturgy for Holy Eucharist adapted for the Season of Creation.
Here’s an ecumenical Service of the Word co-developed with the Anglican Communion to celebrate the season. It includes bulletin inserts and social media images to freely adapt and use, as well as other ways to celebrate the season through preaching, nature walks, and advocacy.
Suzanne Rumsey, PWRDF’s public engagement coordinator, has recorded a sermon that can be downloaded for use in online worship during the Season of Creation. Contact Christine Hills (email@example.com) to receive an MP4 file.
Textweek.com has commentary and resources for preachers on all the lectionary readings for the Season of Creation.
Here is an example of creation-centred Prayers of the People from the diocese of Toronto. The document also includes options for confession and blessing. https://www.anglican.ca/wp-content/uploads/SOC-Additional-Resources.pdf
This year, Anglican and Lutheran leaders from both sides of the border designed a free weekly devotional for parishes and individuals to use. It comes with a reflection, scripture passage, prayer, and hymn.You can find the devotional and other resources on the Anglican church of Canada website here: https://www.anglican.ca/publicwitness/season-of-creation/
PODCAST: SACRED TEACHINGS
This is a podcast from the Anglican Church of Canada. The podcast gathers indigenous elders from across the land to share their insights, wisdom, traditions, and stories about the sacredness of creation. Speakers include Archbishop Mark MacDonald, Dr. Martha Many Grey Horses, and Canon Ginny Doctor. You can listen here: https://podcasts.anglican.ca/
This is a toolkit for children and youth to address climate change from the World Council of Churches. It’s quite broad in scope but a little unwieldy. One highlight includes a free, printable children’s book called Ryan the Rhino which comes with 10 weeks of Sunday School lessons for children aged 5-9.
Salal and Cedar has also designed lesson plans and “Wonder Boxes” which may be assembled or borrowed. These outlines could be used in a children’s time in worship, or an outdoors Sunday School gathering, or shared via Zoom. They explore three themes: Water, Birds, and Trees. http://salalandcedar.com/resources/childrens-curriculum-boxes/
This is a free 6 session course for teens that is made for small groups of less than 15. It could be adapted to do outside and/or online. It grounds creation care in Christian theology and gives youth an alternate vision for a rich and flourishing life.
PWRDF, national churches and other Christian agencies have formed a new faith-based coalition called “For the Love of Creation”. Their first act is an e-petition calling on the Canadian government to rebuild after the pandemic with commitments to GHG reduction, indigenous rights, and the global South. You can read more on the diocesan website: https://www.vancouver.anglican.ca/news/for-the-love-of-creation
This guide has several ideas for practicing a neighbourly love of creation. You can find them on pgs. 24-34. https://seasonofcreation.org/celebration-guide/