Prayers highlighting the earth’s climate emergency will be said at York Minster on Friday 20 September - Global Climate Strike day.
The services of Holy Communion (7.50am and 12.30pm) and Evensong (5.15pm), will include readings and prayers for the protection of the environment and caring for God’s earth. In addition a special prayer will be said at 11am, 12noon, 2.30 and 3.30pm.
Commenting on the Global Climate Strike, Dr John Sentamu, The Archbishop of York, said:
“The Global Climate Strike is led by children and young people across the world who are frightened by the scale and speed of the climate emergency and who are frustrated by the failure of governments, corporations, organisations and citizens to tackle this problem. This is humanity’s greatest and most urgent challenge.
“Each and every one of us can decide today to take an action that will help to repair and sustain this wonderful, precious creation that God gave to us.”
The Reverend Canon Peter Moger, Canon Precentor at York Minster said the prayers will draw attention to the environmental damage caused by humans and the moral imperative to protect the planet for future generations.
“A better future for our planet is possible but it cannot happen without commitment and sustained activity at home, at work and in our own communities. In 2014 we started a programme of work aimed at reducing the Minster’s environmental impact.
“The measures we have taken include composting all green waste, paper and plastic recycling, water reduction measures, installing low energy motion control lighting, fitting secondary glazing and insulation to conserve heat and installing energy saving boilers.
“These small changes to the way we run our building have dramatically minimised and reduced the Minster’s energy requirements. We will continue to find ways to reduce our impact on God’s earth in everything that we do and in every sphere of life. Delegating responsibility to others is not an option.”
The following prayer by the Right Reverend Steven Croft, Bishop of Oxford will be said at York Minster at 11am, 12 noon, 2.30 and 3.30pm:
Loving God, creator of our common home,
You fill the earth and sea and sky with life
Forgive us our neglect of your creation
The choking waste of our pollution
The damage done by careless habits
And our indifference to future generations.
Help us to amend our lives
To refuse more plastic if we can’t reuse it
To lift our voice for lasting change
And to live well and gently on the earth
To the glory of your Son, the Living Word
Through whom you made this fragile world.