At Gloria Dei we have been celebrating the Season of Creation - a month long prayerful observance that calls the planet's 2.2 billion Christians to pray and care for God's creation - for a few years now. Some of us may wonder, why do we do this?
In the their book - The Season of Creation: A Preaching Commentary, published by Fortress Press - the authors adress this question by pointing out that, "There is no focus in the church year on God the Creator," and how for centuries the focus of our theology, ethics and worship have been on our vertical relationship with God, and our horizontal human relatiohships. They draw our attention that it is now time to integrate our relationship with all of creation into both the vertical and horizontal dimensions of our discipleship.
In addtion they list seven more reasons for us to add a Season of Creation into our liturgical calendar.
1. Because God is first and foremost the Creator of all of life. Our own fullness of life depends upon our relationship with God as Creator.
2. Because we were created with the rest of nature. We came from Earth and we cannot survive without all that Earth provides. . . Unless we have centered opportunities to express awareness of and gratitude for our dependence upon Earth and our relationship with other creatures, we will not be whole as human beings.
3. Because God has given us a creation to celebrate with! The time has come not only to celebrate creation but to transform our human relationship to creation by worshiping in solidarity with creation
4. Because through worship we have an opportunity to come to terms with the current ecological crises in a spiritual way so as to empathize with a groaning creation.
5. Because a fresh focus on the wonders and wounds of creation will help us in positive ways to love creation and so care for creation as our personal vocation and our congregational ministry.
6. Because this season enables us to celebrate the many ways in which Christ is connected with creation. From the mystery of the incarnation to the mystery of a cosmic Christ who reconciles all things in heaven and Earth, we celebrate the connection of Christ with creation. And we seek to identify with Earth in solidarity with Christ.
7. Because this season enables us to deepen our understand- ing and experience of the Holy Spirit in relationship with creation. As the “Giver of life” and the “Sustainer of life,” the Holy Spirit is the source of our empowerment, inspiration, and guidance as we seek to live in a way sustainable for all God’s creation. Being “in the unity of the Holy Spirit” encompasses our relationship with all of life. This is foundational for our worship.
By concentrating our worship on God’s creation and our relationship with Christ in creation, we can seek ways to heal rather than exploit creation, to care for our planet home rather than destroy it. And, as we learn what it means to celebrate God the Creator and to worship with creation in a Season of Creation, we may also come to worship God as Creator more meaningfully throughout the entire church year.
You can read their full introduction to the Season of Creation by clicking on the button below.