A Liturgy of Repentance in a World with Changing Climate
Call to Worship:
The Lord is gracious to us. The Lord makes God’s face to shine upon us. The Lord makes the light of God’s countenance to shine upon us. We humans are turning God’s energy into harmful climate change. Let us confess our sins and our failures in our stewardship of God’s creation. Let us worship God.
Reading: Psalm 148
Prayer of Confession:
Leader: Creator God, every day the earth receives light and warmth from the sun you created. Without that energy there would be no life on our home planet. There would be no oceans, no plants, no photosynthesis, no rain forests, no fossil fuels, no fossils no food chain, no food, no living creatures, no human civilization.
People: O God, we marvel at this primal energy, freely given to us. We give you thanks for heat and for light. We give you thanks for all your creation.
Leader: Redeemer God, we confess our thoughtless abuse of the gifts of nature. We confess our shortsightedness in consuming the earth’s energy reserves. We confess our scandalous willingness to return poisonous pollution to your earth, your oceans and your skies. We confess the wastefulness that leaves so many of our brothers and sisters around the world destitute. We confess the smallness of mind which refuses to comprehend the effect of human behavior on the earth’s climate. We confess our contemptuous ignoring of those human prophets, especially the devoted scientists who have cried out warnings against our abusive exploitation of the earth. We confess our contemptuous ignoring of our children’s, and their children’s, future living conditions in and overheated climate with unbreathable atmosphere.
People: O God, we confess our sinfulness and repent. We beseech You to lead us to Your ways.
Leader: Sustainer God, help us to discover sustainability anew. Help us to so love our Earth that we will learn to treasure it back to health. Teach us to till it and keep it in ways that will sustain it for as long into the endless future as it is Your will to do so. Teach us wisdom to respect its limits, its finite nature and the delicate balances in its systems. Teach us to love and sustain, as we have been loved an sustained by you.
People: O God, we trust and hope, help our hesitation. We commit our lives, our needs, the decisions we make, the paths we choose, and the future of coming generations to your loving guidance. Amen.
Hymn: For the Beauty of the Earth
Reverend Barbara G. Green
Churches’ Center for Theology and Public Policy