Celebrate Creation Time from 1st September – 4th October!

Creation Time is coming … are you getting ready to celebrate?!

Eco-Congregation Ireland hopes that churches and faith communities throughout Ireland will observe Creation Time by holding special services and environmental events.

fruit & vegCreation Time, which takes place from September 1st to October 4th each year, is a great opportunity for Christians to reflect on the wonder and mystery of Creation and to choose better ways to relate to Creation, ways that reflect God’s ways of justice and peace.

This year’s theme, God, Whose Farm is All Creation, ties in with the fact that 2014 is the International Year of Family Farming (IYFF).

The goal of IYFF is to reposition family farming (which is the predominant form of agriculture in the food production sector world-wide) at the centre of agricultural, environmental and social policies in the national agendas by identifying opportunities leading to a shift towards more equal and balanced development.

There is no need to be stuck for ideas as to how to celebrate Creation Time as there are excellent resources available, which are aimed at helping churches, communities and individuals to focus on the theme.  We have prepared some prayers, which you can find here. You will also find Bible readings, sermon starters, children’s talks, prayers, musical suggestions and background information on the theme on the Eco-Congregation Scotland website by clicking here. The same resources can be found on the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland website by clicking here.

andrew orr Recommending the resources, with their emphasis on family farming, ECI chairman Rev Andrew Orr says: "Family farms are the backbone of rural life throughout Ireland and even those who live in urban areas often have a family farming connection just a generation or two ago.  With their generations of experience, small local farmers often understand the importance of caring for their environment; but across the globe family farming is under threat from a combination of multinational corporations, government policies and climate change.  These resources help us to cherish and give thanks to God for our farming communities and those who supply our food, and encourage us to take action to protect God's creation."

Creation Time started in the Orthodox Church in 1989 and since then has been supported by a growing number of churches throughout the world and the World Council of Churches. It was endorsed at the European Ecumenical Assembly in Sibiu, Romania in 2007, when it was agreed that the period "be dedicated to prayer for the protection of Creation and the promotion of sustainable lifestyles that reverse our contribution to climate change".

The Irish Catholic Bishops also encourage the observation of Creation Time in their excellent 2009 pastoral, The Cry of the Earth, which has recently been updated and will be re-launched during Creation Time this year. The pastoral also recommends that all parishes enrol in an environmental programme, like Eco-Congregation Ireland.

You can find more resources on the World Council of Churches website by clicking here.

Let us know how you plan to celebrate – and send us your photos afterwards – to Fiona Murdoch at info@ecocongregationireland.com.