Lenten Novena: Standing Rock and the Cry of the Earth
The Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach and the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas’ Institute Justice Team developed the Lenten Novena for Protectors of Mother Earth to invite people of faith to join in solidarity with people, especially indigenous communities, who are courageously speaking out against the impacts of extractive industries. You can find the full Novena here and read it in Spanish here.
Opening Prayer: “Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful with justice and mercy, and kindle in us the fire of your love.”
Our Father …
Hail Mary …
Glory Be …
Reading: Then the LORD will guide you always and give you plenty even on the parched land. He will renew your strength, and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring whose water never fails. The ancient ruins shall be rebuilt for your sake, and the foundations from ages past you shall raise up; "Repairer of the breach," they shall call you, "Restorer of ruined homesteads." - Isaiah 58:9-14
Reflection: “Everything is related, and we human beings are united as brothers and sisters on a wonderful pilgrimage, woven together by the love God has for each of his creatures and which also unites us in fond affection with Brother Sun, Sister Moon, Brother River, and Mother Earth.” – Laudato Si’ 92
The water protectors have caught the global imagination, with indigenous people and their allies traveling to North Dakota from around the world to join the Standing Rock in prayer for tribal rights and for creation. We join in song as “the whole world is watching.”
Prayer: “God of love, may we grow in our love for you, responding with justice and mercy to the cry of the poor and with reverence and care to the cry of the earth.”
Prayer for Our Earth:
All powerful God, you are present in the whole universe
And in the smallest of your creatures.
You embrace with your tenderness all that exists.
Pour out upon us the power of your love,
That we may protect life and beauty.
Fill us with peace
That we may live
As brothers and sisters, harming no one.
O God of the poor,
Help us to rescue the abandoned and forgotten of this earth,
So precious in your eyes.
Bring healing to our lives,
That we may protect the world and not prey on it,
That we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction.
Touch the hearts
Of those who look only for gain
At the expense of the poor and the earth.
Teach us to discover the worth of each thing,
To be filled with awe and contemplation,
To recognize that we are profoundly united
With every creature
As we journey towards your infinite light.
We thank you for being with us each day.
Encourage us, we pray, in our struggle
For justice, love and peace.
- Concluding prayer of Laudato Si