Environmental Stewardship Commission

Episcopal Church in Minnesota

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We meet quarterly close to the solstice and equinox.

Annual Special Projects


Resolution on the Spirituality of Food Production

Resolution on Church Buildings and Grounds

Resolution on Creation Season

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Additional Creation Season Materials:

The Feast of St. Francis

OPENING HYMN: "Morning Has Broken" Hymn 8 (The Hymnal 1982)

Celebrant: Blessed be the one, holy, and living God. People: And blessed be God's kingdom, now and for ever. Amen.

Celebrant: Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

HYMN of Praise: "All Creatures of Our God and King" Hymn 400 (The Hymnal 1982)

A Prayer for the Feast of St. Francis

Celebrant: May God, who is wonderful in all works, be with you all. People: And also with you. Celebrant: Let us pray. Most high, almighty, good Lord, grant your people grace to renounce gladly the vanities of this world; that, following the way of blessed Francis, we may for love of you delight in all your whole creatures with perfect joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


Reader: A Reading from the Book of Genesis (Gen 1.20-25)

(recommended translation: The Message)

Reader: Hear what the Spirit is saying to God's people. People: Thanks be to God.

THE PSALM (Psalm 148:7-14)


Reader: A Reading from Paul's Letter to the Galatians (Galatians 6:14-18)

(recommended translation: The Message)

Reader: Hear what the Spirit is saying to God's people. People: Thanks be to God.

THE GOSPEL The People stand.

Celebrant: The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew. People: Glory to you, Lord Christ.

(Matthew 11:25-30)

Celebrant: The Gospel of the Lord. People: Praise to you, Lord Christ.


THE PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE [Eucharistic Prayer 2 from Enriching Our Worship, vol. 1 (Church Publishing, 1998)]

God whose name is Love, you created this world and all that is in it. Look upon your wild creatures which delight us by their variety and beauty. Be with them in their struggle for existence, and shelter them from the dangers that surround them. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our Prayer.

Look upon the companion animals, O God, who share our homes and our lives, and who show us a love and loyalty few people can surpass. Bless them for the pleasure and companionship they give, and protect all those who suffer neglect and cruelty. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our Prayer.

Look upon us. O God, with love and mercy. Forgive our selfishness and our cruelty and forgive our bitterness against those who abuse your creation, lead us gently back in your way of love. Transform the hearts of all who, out of ignorance or malice, use creation with cruelty so that they may be filled with your wisdom, love and mercy. Lord, in your mercy, Hear our Prayer.

We thank you for the gift of life, with all its blessings and sorrows. Shield the joyous, comfort and strengthen those in any need or trouble. Bless those who will be born today and those who will die, that joining with the company of all your saints we may rejoice in one unending song of praise. We ask your prayers for those we now name (The People audibly name those for whom they are interceding.)

Lord, in your mercy, Hear our Prayer.

Celebrant: O Lord our God, accept the prayers of your people; in your tender mercy, look with compassion upon us and all who turn to you for help; for you are gracious, O lover of souls, and to you we give glory, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and for ever. Amen.


Celebrant: The peace of the Lord be always with you. People: And also with you.


Hymn 380 (The Hymnal 1982) "From all that dwell below the skies" (sing verse 3, then verse 1)


Celebrant: The Lord be with you. People: And also with you. Celebrant: Lift up your hearts. People: We lift them to the Lord. Celebrant: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God. People: It is right to give our thanks and praise.

Celebrant: We praise you and we bless you, holy and gracious God, source of life abundant. From before time you made ready the creation. Your Spirit moved over the deep and brought all things into being: sun, moon, and stars; earth, winds, and waters; and every living thing.

You made us in your image, and taught us to walk in your ways. But we rebelled against you, and wandered far away; and yet, as a mother cares for her children, you would not forget us. Time and again you called us to live in the fullness of your love. And so this day we join with Saints and Angels in the chorus of praise that rings through eternity, lifting our voices to magnify you as we now say:

All: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

Celebrant: Glory and honor and praise to you, holy and living God. To deliver us from the power of sin and death and to reveal your grace, you looked with favor upon Mary, your willing servant, that she might conceive and bear a son, Jesus the holy child of God.

Living among us, Jesus loved us. He broke bread with outcasts and sinners, healed the sick, and proclaimed good news to the poor. He yearned to draw all the world to himself yet we were heedless of his call to walk in love. Then, the time came for him to complete upon the cross the sacrifice of his life, and to be glorified by you.

On the night before he died for us, Jesus was at table with his friends. He took bread, gave thanks to you, broke it, and gave it to them, and said: "Take, eat: This is my Body, which is given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me."

As supper was ending, Jesus took the cup of wine. Again, he gave thanks to you, gave it to them, and said: "Drink this, all of you: This is my Blood of the new Covenant, which is poured out for you and for all for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink it, do this for the remembrance of me."

Now gathered at your table, O God of all creation, and remembering Christ, crucified and risen, who was and is and is to come, we offer to you our gifts of bread and wine, and ourselves, a living sacrifice. Pour out your Spirit upon these gifts that they may be the Body and Blood of Christ. Breathe your Spirit over the whole earth and make us your new creation, the Body of Christ given for the world you have made. In the fullness of time bring us with St. Francis and all your saints, from every tribe and language and people and nation, to feast at the banquet prepared from the foundation of the world.

All: Through Christ and with Christ and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, to you be honor, glory, and praise, for ever and ever. Amen.

Celebrant: And now as our Savior Christ has taught us, we are bold to say, All: Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.


Celebrant: Alleluia. Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us; All: therefore, let us keep the feast. Alleluia.

This is Christ's Table. All are invited to receive the consecrated Bread and Wine, or a blessing. If you wish to receive a blessing only, come to the altar rail and fold your arms across your chest.

COMMUNION HYMN: "I, the Lord of sea and sky" Hymn 812 (Wonder, Love and Praise)

When all have received: Celebrant: Let us pray. All: Lord, make us instruments of your peace. Where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is discord, union; where there is doubt faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy. Grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console; to be understood as to understand; to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive; it is in pardoning that we are pardoned; and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen (Attributed to St. Francis)

BLESSING OF THE ANIMALS and HYMN: "All things bright and beautiful" Hymn 405 (The Hymnal 1982)

When all the animals have been blessed, the service continues: All: We give you thanks, most gracious God, for the beauty of earth and sky and sea; for the richness of mountains, plains, rivers and lakes; for the song of birds and the loveliness of flowers. We thank you also for all the marvelous creatures you have created to share this world with us. We praise you for these good gifts, and pray that we may safeguard them for our posterity. Grant that we may continue to grow in our grateful enjoyment of your abundant creation, to the honor and glory of your Name, now and forever. Amen. [Thanksgiving #8 (For the Beauty of the Earth), page 840, Book of Common Prayer]

BLESSING of all present

RECESSIONAL HYMN "All God's Critters"


Celebrant: Go in peace to love and serve the Lord. All: Thanks be to God.

St. James Episcopal Church Hibbing, Minnesota St. John's Episcopal Church Eveleth, Minnesota Dr. William Durie, musician The Rev. Marta Maddy, priest-in-charge

Notes on the service: The Epistle and Gospel lessons were taken from Eugene H. Peterson's Bible in contemporary language called, THE MESSAGE (NavPress, 2006). The Eucharistic prayer is Eucharistic Prayer 2 from ENRICHING OUR WORSHIP, vol. 1 (Church Publishing, 1998). Closing prayer is a prayer of thanksgiving For the Beauty of the Earth (THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER, 1976, p. 840).

Service Notes: The Hymns and readings came from
  • The Hymnal 1982 according to the use of The Episcopal Church, Church Hymnal Corporation, New York, NY, 1982
  • Wonder, Love, and Praise: a Supplement to The Hymnal 1982, Church Publishing, Inc., New York, NY, 1997
  • The Message, Eugene H. Peterson, NavPress, 2006
  • Enriching Our Worship, Vol 1, Church Publishing, 1998
  • Book of Common Prayer, 1976
For a complete list of music, check our Creation and Environmental Music Page

This service was first used in October 2008 at St. James Episcopal Church Hibbing, Minnesota and St. John's Episcopal Church Eveleth, Minnesotas by the Rev Marta Maddy. For additional information on the service, contact the Rev Marta Maddy. You may use this service at your church with credit to the Minnesota Episcopal Environmental Stewardship Commission and the Rev Marta Maddy.

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This page last updated 2008-10-09.

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