Sunday, November 13, 2011

Praying the News: November 13 2011

Praying the News has become a regular feature of the Green Sprouts blog, a way of lifting up people and situations to God and inviting readers to do the same. Prayer is not a substitute for action; neither is action a substitute for prayer. Each is strengthened by the other.

Almighty God, in giving us dominion over things on earth you made us fellow workers in your creation: Give us wisdom and reverence so to use the resources of nature, that no one may suffer from our abuse of them, and that generations yet to come may continue to praise you for your bounty; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Collect For the Conservation of Natural Resources (The Book of Common Prayer, p. 827)

Please pray for:

Wise leaders.  With this week’s IEA report stating that “the door is closing” on the opportunity to hold global warming to 2°C (see Numbering Our Days: Five Years ), we need wise leaders more than ever. Speaking at a gathering at the UK’s Royal Society to discuss the ecological impacts of climate change, Jo Philips, the Head of Climate Change Adaptation at WWF-UK said: “Current limited global ambition means that children around us today could be living through this ‘worst case scenario’. We have to take responsibility now. We know what we have to do and we have the solutions – we now need the leadership and commitment necessary to tackle this global problem before it is too late.”

The Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF). The CVF is a group of nations that already are heavily affected by climate change. They are meeting now in Dhaka, Bangladesh, to prepare for the upcoming COP17 conference in Durban, South Africa. Of special concern is the understanding that the less vulnerable (and more powerful) nations at COP17 are discussing proposing an international agreement that would begin in 2017 , after the five-year door of opportunity has closed.

Climate justice for Africa and poor people around the world. With the COP17 meeting in South Africa, leaders from Africa – including Archbishop Desmond Tutu – have created the “Have Faith – Act Now” campaign to advocate for climate justice. Pray for their voices to be heard.

Protection for those affected by severe weather and sound understanding. Last week’s severe weather included a big storm in Alaska and unusually strong November tornadoes in Oklahoma. As of November 4, the U.S. this year had already set a record with fourteen billion-dollar weather disasters. Pray that as extreme weather events become more common and more severe that we receive and are able to understand honest information about the relationship of these events to climate change.

With thanksgiving for the decision to have a more careful review of the environmental effects of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. Pray for wisdom and courage for those making the final decision about the pipeline, and pray for the people who worked hard to make our officials aware of the concerns around this project.

Pray for our own hearts to be open so we can see the needs in the world around us and gladly respond to those needs:

O heavenly Father, who has filled the world with beauty; Open our eyes to behold your gracious hand in all your works; that, rejoicing in your whole creation, we may learn to serve you with gladness; for the sake of him through whom all things were made, your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayer for Joy in God’s Creation (The Book of Common Prayer, p. 814)

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