Pastor’s Corner for the Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A, by Fr. Bruce Botha SJ

During the month of September, the Church celebrates the season of creation, and our Caritas: Environmental Justice group has prepared a series of reflections for the month.

As we celebrate this season of creation let us not forget that Pope Francis has also asked us to join him in praying for all of those of who live on the margins. In today’s world, we see an increase in extreme weather events, and it is most often the poorest people who suffer most and are least equipped to recover from natural disaster. This is why, in Laudato Si, Pope Francis makes the point that the rich Global North owes a moral debt to the poor Global South. The Pope’s prayer intention for September is as follows:

We pray for those persons living on the margins of society, in inhumane life conditions; may they not be overlooked by institutions and never considered of lesser importance.

I conclude this Pastor’s Corner by offering to you a prayer written by Pope Francis himself for all his creation. May we pray it daily, keeping in mind also the particular prayer intention that Pope Francis offers us during the month of September.

A Prayer for Our Earth  (Laudato Si’ 246)

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. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen


Fr Bruce Botha SJ