Enviro Prayer Diary

The purpose of this Prayer Diary is to provide subjects for your reflection and prayer as the Spirit moves you.


November 2023 Environmental Prayer Diary





Poem of Lament

“It’s 3:23 in the morning
and I’m awake
because my great great grandchildren
won’t let me sleep.
my great great grandchildren
ask me in dreams
what did you do while the Planet was plundered?
what did you do when the Earth was unravelling?
surely you did something
when the seasons started failing?
as the mammals, reptiles, birds were all dying?
did you fill the streets with protest
when democracy was stolen?
what did you do

Excerpt from “Hieroglyphic Stairway” by Drew Dillinger











Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the wonders of your creation.
Thank you for guiding us, leading us, protecting us, developing us since the beginning of the creation till now.
Make us grow in the awareness of the urgency of safeguarding and developing the wonders of your creations and take a concrete response to it.
Help us to live and work harmoniously with your creation.  Protect us from all dangers and destruction

Father Henry Eikhlein,
Diocesan Programme Coordinator from Pathein Diocese in Myanmar






‘The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.’

Helen Keller






Creator God, we give thanks that science is continuing to increase our understanding of the world we live upon and the bodies we live within.
We pray that knowledge gained by research and technology might not simply be profit-driven, but kindle a growing desire for the common good of all, 
that rich and poor alike might see the benefit and humankind become,
as in the time of Eden, good stewards of this earth.






International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in Armed Conflict and War

On the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict, we recognize the environment as yet another victim of war.  Crops are torched, water wells polluted, and soils poisoned to gain short-term military advantages, with devastating consequences that can last decades. 

Wars destroy habitats, kill wildlife, generate pollution and remake ecosystems entirely, with consequences that ripple through the decades.

The Russian/Ukrainian war has had a dramatic, devastating and tragic effect on the surrounding eco-systems, and indeed also much further afield. 

While Ukraine occupies only 6% of Europe’s territory, it is home to 35% of the continent’s biodiversity. Forest fires, loud explosions, and contamination of soil and water lead to the destruction of natural habitats. Many species have migrated, changing both the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.

The destruction of the Kakhovka Dam in southern Ukraine in early June 2023 has not only resulted in a massive flood and a humanitarian crisis but it has also unleashed a series of severe environmental impacts that are of great concern. The breach of this crucial dam has disrupted the ecological balance of the area, leading to contamination, habitat destruction, and long-term consequences for the region’s natural resources.

The Kakhovka breach also uprooted landmines, tore through caches of weapons and ammunition, and spilt 150 tonnes of machine oil into the Black Sea which poses a real threat to ships in the area.

For every flooded home and farm, there are fields upon fields of newly planted grains, fruits and vegetables whose irrigation canals are drying up. Thousands of fish were left gasping on mud flats. Fledgling water birds lost their nests and their food sources. Countless trees and plants were drowned.

Nearly all of the 260 animals in the nearby zoo died. Prior to the tragedy the zoo was home to monkeys, raccoons, a donkey, ponies, coypus, various birds, porcupines, groundhogs, turtles, and many other species.

The long-term consequences of this unimaginable selfish act will be generational. It will have severe, long-term impacts on Ukraine’s environment, economy and society, including possible displacement and migration of population, and is likely to cast a dark shadow over the country for decades to come.

Sadly, the Russian/Ukrainian conflict is not alone.  Throughout the world there are vicious conflicts raging. The climate crisis intensifies conflict over natural resources, inflating food prices and increasing geopolitical tensions. 

Today, around one in every five people is living in an area affected by fragility, conflict or violence.  The assault on our planet is driving instability, displacement and confrontation, and making our quest for peace ever more difficult. Protecting the environment is essential to preserving peace. 

Protecting the environment is integral to conflict prevention, peacebuilding and sustainable development, because there can be no durable peace if the natural resources that sustain livelihoods and ecosystems are destroyed.










A Prayer for Peace in Our Time

O God, author and giver of peace,
in whose image and likeness each of us has been created
with a human dignity worthy of respect on earth
and destined for eternal glory,
Listen to the cry that rises from every corner of this fragile earth,
from our human family torn by violent conflict:

Give peace in our time, O good and gracious God,
that peace which, as your son Jesus Christ told us
and as we have experienced in these days,
is a peace which the world cannot give.

To world leaders grant the wisdom
to see beyond the boundaries of race, religion, and nation
to that common humanity that makes us all your children
and brothers and sisters to one another.

To those who have taken up arms in anger or revenge
or even in the cause of justice
grant the grace of conversion to the path of peaceful dialogue
and constructive collaboration.

To the innocent who live in the shadow of war and terror,
especially the frightened children and defenceless animals,
be a shelter and strength, their haven and hope.

And to those who have already lost their lives
as victims of human cruelty and chemical warfare,
open wide your arms and enfold them all
in the embrace of your compassion, healing, and everlasting life.

Grant this through Jesus Christ, your son, our Lord.
Mary, Mother of all and Queen of peace, pray for us.

Peter J. Scagnelli






“The fact is that no species has ever had such wholesale control over everything on Earth, living or dead, as we now have. That lays upon us, whether we like it or not, an awesome responsibility. In our hands now lies not only our own future, but that of all other living creatures with whom we share the Earth.”

David Attenborough






World Science Day for Peace and Development

2023 theme: “Global Science for Global Wellbeing: Science for and with society”.

Celebrated every 10 November, World Science Day for Peace and Development highlights the important role of science in society and the need to engage the wider public in debates on emerging scientific issues. It also underlines the importance and relevance of science in our daily lives.

Global science, which involves collaboration between scientists and researchers from around the world working together, has the potential to accelerate progress toward developing sustainable solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges, from public health, education, climate change to food security and economic development.  By creating innovative solutions, such as online learning platforms and remote work technologies scientists can help to overcome geographical barriers that prevent people from accessing education and employment opportunities. Scientific knowledge can improve the quality of life at many different levels – from the routine workings of our everyday lives to global issues.

Pray for peaceful international cooperation in all aspects of scientific research






Encyclical Letter Fratelli Tutti of Pope Francis
on the Fraternity and Social Friendship

Chapter Three – Envisaging and engendering an open world

A love ever more open

95.         Love also impels us towards universal communion. No one can mature or find fulfilment by withdrawing from others. By its very nature, love calls for growth in openness and the ability to accept others as part of a continuing adventure that makes every periphery converge in a greater sense of mutual belonging. As Jesus told us: “You are all brothers” (Mt 23:8).

96.         This need to transcend our own limitations also applies to different regions and countries. Indeed, “the ever-increasing number of interconnections and communications in today’s world makes us powerfully aware of the unity and common destiny of the nations. In the dynamics of history, and in the diversity of ethnic groups, societies and cultures, we see the seeds of a vocation to form a community composed of brothers and sisters who accept and care for one another”.[75]

Prayerfully consider how this is affecting our own Country






Holy God, maker of the skies above, lowly Christ, born amidst the growing earth, spirit of Life, wind over the flowing waters, in earth, sea and sky, you are there. O hidden mystery, sun behind all suns, soul behind all souls, in everything we touch, in everyone we meet, your presence is round us, and we give you thanks. When we have not touched, but trampled you in creation, when we have not met but missed you in one another, forgive us, and hear now our plea for mercy. The creator of the world watches over us in our waking and our sleeping; Christ teaches us how to die out of love; the Spirit of the world dwells within us to guide us and keep us safe; the God of love and mercy grant us the grace of pardon, wholeness and peace, through Jesus Christ.












Isaiah 24:1-6

The Lord’s Devastation of the Earth

24 See, the Lord is going to lay waste the earth and devastate it; he will ruin its face and scatter its inhabitants –
it will be the same
    for priest as for people,
    for the master as for his servant,
    for the mistress as for her servant,
    for seller as for buyer, 
    for borrower as for lender,
    for debtor as for creditor.
The earth will be completely laid waste and totally plundered. The Lord has spoken this word.
The earth dries up and withers, the world languishes and withers, the heavens languish with the earth.
The earth is defiled by its people; they have disobeyed the laws, violated the statutes and broken the everlasting covenant.
Therefore a curse consumes the earth; its people must bear their guilt. Therefore earth’s inhabitants are burned up, and very few are left.






A live simply creed

We believe in God who gave us a world to share in friendship, equality and peace.
We believe in God who created all people and our world out of love.
We recognise that the world is unequal and unjust and that we are individually and collectively responsible for being good stewards and for working with hope and love to restore God’s kingdom on earth.
We believe in Christ, living, suffering, dying and rising, the life force in the whole of creation.
We believe in one world, one people, fed from one table.
We believe that we are all vital parts of Christ’s body, reflecting his love, by and through our actions, compassion, attitudes and choices.
We believe we are God’s instruments through which by faith, prayer and action we will change the world.
We believe in a God of love, who calls all of us to listen to each other, to actively share and treat each other as equals in humility and hope.
We believe that within God’s circle of love, faith and trust we all share in a worldwide hunger for justice as brothers and sisters in Christ.

Written by a group of CAFOD volunteers






Lord, allow my ears to listen to the cry of the earth,
the voices of my sisters and brothers,
those who face the harsh reality of climate change.
     Lord, I want to do your will.

Lord, allow my eyes to see the beauty of creation.
In flowers, creatures, forests, and cities alike.
     Lord, I want to do your will will.

Lord, allow my voice to speak out for justice,
and ensure people living in poverty are heard.
     Lord, I want to do your will 

Lord, allow my hands to care for the earth,
To toil, to reap, to celebrate.
     Lord, I want to do your will 

Lord, allow my feet to take the path less trod,
to walk the extra mile,
to take your message out to the world.
     Lord, I want to do your will

Father Michael Fitzsimons/CAFOD






“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wondersand realities of the universe about us the less taste we shall have for the destruction of our race. Wonder and humility are wholesome emotions, and they do not exist side by side with a lust for destruction.”

Rachel Carson






Stick Heart Prayer Station – Creative Prayer for the Environment

This simple Nature Prayer Activity is ideal for any churchyard, school field, or community space, offering a creative way for all ages to collaboratively pray for the environment.

To make a Stick Heart Prayer Station, you’ll need to gather a collection of fallen sticks & branches.  Use some to mark out a large heart shape outline on a flat piece of ground.

Leave a basket of sticks nearby & invite people from your community to add their own stick to the centre of the heart along with their prayer for the world. As they offer their stick prayers, the sticks intertwine with those that have been left before, filling the heart with prayers of compassion for the planet.

You could add prayer prompts to help people pray.

  • Prayers for people around the world affected by climate change
  • For countries affected by flooding or drought
  • For marine life suffering from pollution, over-fishing
  • Animals who have lost habitats
  • Deforestation
  • For world leaders, that they make the right decisions for the planet
  • For your community, that they come together to make a change
  • For ourselves, that we make the right choices for God’s creation 

Leave your Stick Heart Prayer Station for others to find as they pass by. The stick heart will also provide a great space for nearby insects too.







As the sun rises, Lord, Let your light shine on me. Destroy the darkness about me, Scatter the darkness before me, Disperse the darkness behind me, Dispel the darkness within me. Let your light shine on me. As the sun rises, Lord, Let your light shine on me. The warmth of your Presence, The brightness of your love, The radiance of your joy, The shining of your hope. Let your light shine on me. As the sun rises, Lord, Let your light shine on me. Your light to guide, Your light to lead, Your light to direct, Your light to brighten. Let your light shine on me.

From Power Lines: Celtic Prayers About Work by Fr David Adam.






World Children’s Day





World Fisheries Day

The World Fisheries Day helps in highlighting the critical importance to human lives, of water and the lives it sustains, both in and out of water. Water forms a continuum, whether contained in rivers, lakes, and ocean.

Fish forms an important part of the diets of billions of people around the world, particularly those that live near rivers, coasts and other water bodies and as a result, many traditional societies and communities are involved in the fishing industry, both for nutrition and livelihoods.

Overfishing is a challenge in SA’s fishing industry, with some fish stocks being fished at biologically unsustainable levels. The UN’s Food & Agriculture Organisation estimates that about 34% of fish stocks are trawled beyond sustainable levels, and another 60% are being sought at their largest sustainable limit. This threatens the long-term sustainability of industry and the livelihoods of those dependent on it.

In order to meet demand, overfishing and mechanisation has resulted in a crisis – fish stocks are being depleted through ‘factory’ vessels, bottom trawling, and other means of unsustainable fishing methods. Overfishing leads to the depletion of fish stocks, and loss of biodiversity. 

SA has a rich and diverse marine ecosystem with more than 10,000 recorded marine plant and animal species, including vital habitats such as estuaries and mangroves. To preserve the sustainability of the industry, the country enforces the Marine Living Resources Act, which regulates fishing activities and safeguards marine biodiversity. 

The fishing economy provides employment opportunities for about 58,000 South Africans and is a sizeable source of foreign exchange, as the country is a net exporter of fish and fish products. In 2022 SA’s fish exports were valued at more than R7bn, the largest export markets being Spain, Italy and Hong Kong.

Other viable growth opportunities in SA’s fishing industry such as aquaculture, commonly known as fish farming, are becoming reality. This sustainable method of producing high-value seafood can help alleviate pressure on wild fish stocks. SA has already established abalone production farms in the country.

Unless the issues of overfishing and unsustainable methods are collectively addressed, the crisis will deepen, severely affecting marine biodiversity as well as the livelihoods of many dependant on the industry.  The World Fisheries Day helps to highlight these problems and moves towards finding solutions to the increasingly inter-connected problems we are facing, and in the longer term, to sustainable means of maintaining fish stocks.

Pray for all who are involved in the many aspects of the Fisheries Industry.






Today Is New Creation Day

A wind flame from the ancient void
Swept wild across the groaning deep,
A voice like lightning struck the sea
To rouse her from her ancient sleep,
And stars exploded with the dawn
As green and glist’ning Earth was born:
Today, today is new creation day!

Deep birthquakes through the universe
Portend a world where children play,
As Earth in labour pain awaits
The cosmic liberation day,
For Christ erupted from the Earth
To make this day a day of birth:
Today, today is new creation day!

Like young birds trapped in caverns cold
We yearn to soar with endless flight;
In Christ we find our newborn selves
And freedom from the daily fight,
Affirming life as birth to be
At one with those in agony:
Today, today is new creation day!

With Christ we plunged beneath the grave
And rose like dawn created new,
Our exodus through tidal waves
Purged us for celebrating true,
All human dignity and worth
Through Christ our partner on this Earth:
Today, today is new creation day!

Words: © Norman Habel 1970






God our Father, teach us how to live more simply, that others may simply live. Help us to turn from our arrogant ways. Redeem us, redeem your world, heal its wounds and dry its tears, for the sake of your dear Son, who died for us all.






Stone Soup: A Traditional Folk Tale

Once upon a time, a wise old man decided to go on a journey.  So he packed a small bag, said goodbye to his wife, and set off. He travelled all day without meeting anyone.  When it was evening, he came to a small village. “I think I’ll stop here for the night,” he said to himself.

Near the centre of the village, he met a group of people.  So he introduced himself. “I’m a simple traveller,” he said, “looking for a safe place to sleep and a hot meal.”

“We’d be glad to offer you a place to sleep,” the villagers told him, “but we have very little food. Our crops were very poor this year, and there’s not much to eat in the whole village. Most of us are just barely getting by.”

“I’m sorry to hear that,” the old man said. “But you needn’t worry about feeding me. I already have everything I need.  In fact, I was thinking of making some stone soup to share with all of you.”

“Stone soup?” the villagers asked. “What’s that? We’ve never heard of stone soup.”

“Oh, it’s wonderful,” said the old man. “Best soup I’ve ever tasted. If you bring me a soup pot and some water, I’ll make some for all of us.”  And so the villagers rushed back to their homes. When they returned, one was carrying a large soup pot, another had wood for a fire, and others brought water.

When the fire was going and the water had begun to boil, the old man took out a small silk pouch. With great ceremony, he reached in and pulled out a smooth, round tone. He carefully dropped the stone into the boiling water. The villagers watched eagerly.

The old man began to slowly stir the pot, sniffing the aroma and licking his lips in anticipation. “I do like a tasty stone soup,” he said. “Of course, stone soup with cabbage—now that’s really special.”

“I might be able to find a bit of cabbage,” one villager said. And off she went to her house, returning with a small cabbage she had stored away in her pantry.  “Wonderful!” said the old man, as he added the cabbage to the pot. “This reminds me of the time I had stone soup with cabbage and a bit of salted beef. It was unbelievably good.”  After a moment of silence, the village butcher spoke up. “I know where there’s a bit of salted beef,” he said. And off he went to his shop to get it.

When he returned, the old man added the beef to the soup pot and continued to stir. “Can you imagine what this soup would taste like if we had a bit of onion…and perhaps a few potatoes…and a carrot or two…and some mushrooms. Oh, this would a meal fit for royalty.”

And before he knew it, the soup pot was filled to the brim with vegetables of all kinds –  carrots and potatoes, mushrooms and onions, turnips and green beans, beets and celery – all brought by the men and women and children of the village. Not only that, but the village baker came out with some fresh bread and butter.

And as the soup simmered slowly over the fire, the wonderful aroma began to waft over the villagers. And they began to relax and talk together, sharing songs and stories and jokes. And when the soup was finally done, the old man ladled it out into bowls, and they all shared a delicious meal together. There was more than enough for everyone to eat their fill. Afterward, they all declared that it was the best soup they had ever tasted.

The mayor of the village pulled the old man aside, and quietly offered him a great deal of money for the magic stone, but the old man refused to sell it. The next morning, he woke early and packed up his belongings. As he was leaving the village, he passed by a group of children playing at the side of the road. He handed the youngest one the silk pouch containing the stone, and he whispered, “It was not the stone that performed the magic. It was all of us together.”







Buy Nothing Day






Creator God, this earth is miraculous and beautiful. Forgive our confusion and inaction as we confront the challenges of climate change.

In the light of your truth, seen so clearly in the life and teaching of Jesus, help us to re-examine ourselves and our lifestyle choices and clearly see the implications of how we live on all that sustains life on this earth. May we follow your leading in caring for every aspect of this precious world, which you made, and love.

We pray for world leaders to agree a new, just and radical treaty in Dubai that will protect our fragile world for future generations.

Throughout history you have moved people to do amazing things for the sake of their neighbours. Inspire us now to work together, as your people, to change priorities in the way we live, so that we build a fair and safe world for all your creation; a world where your will is done as it is in heaven







The Cost of Consumption

People hate this kind of talk. Raw truth is never popular.Amos 5:10, The Message

Coming to grips with the history and reality of our money culture is challenging. But with awareness comes opportunity and motivation for change. Contemplative practice helps me hold the tension of suffering with my responsibility to participate in its healing. I can live with fewer comforts and conveniences when I see my part in global warming and poverty. I can hold companies and politicians accountable for their actions, voting in elections and with my wallet.

Paul Hawken offers some hard truth that I hope you can read with a contemplative, nondual mind:

. . . It is highly inconvenient to acknowledge what is happening in the environment. That awareness runs counter to what we have been taught—and what we expect and want from our lives. The United States was founded by acts of exploiting land, people, and resources. [Christianity legitimated human slavery!] We have enlarged that principle and do it the whole world over in the name of trade and growth. . . .

Business is rewarded for producing the best product demanded by the market at the lowest price. The free market is efficient because the producer has every incentive to be as thrifty and innovative as possible. . . . Free market industrialism took root in a world in which trade was expansive and global. Resources of unusual abundance were wrested away from indigenous cultures in the Americas, Africa, and Asia, furthering the fortunes of the trading, industrial nations, which took what they wanted with force. It was colonialism, and it is practiced today, not by adventurers but by transnational corporations or proxies in host countries.

Business did not anticipate a time when those resources would diminish or run out. It was inconceivable that the vast plains and forests of the New World could be exhausted, or that the abundant new fuels of coal could produce enough waste to foul the air and the seas, or that the use of oil could eventually lead to global climate change. So the system of rewarding the lowest price, impelling companies to exploit the cheapest sources of labour and materials, could not anticipate a time when the lowest price would no longer be the lowest cost, when seeking the cheapest means to get a product to market would end up costing society the most in terms of pollution, loss of habitat, degradation of biological diversity, human sickness, and cultural destruction. . . .

[Thankfully] the restorative economy is beginning to prosper. In the United States today, tens of thousands of companies are committed to some form of environmental commerce that competes with businesses that are not willing to adapt. The impulse to enhance the economic viability of life on earth through the recognition and preservation of all living systems is becoming increasingly central to religion, science, medicine, literature, the arts, and youth. It will be the dominant theme of generations to come.

From Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditations











Prayer for COP28

Father, we pray that the decisions made during COP28 won’t be empty words. We ask that those in positions of power be held accountable to the targets set, working with conviction to go above and beyond them. For the sake of future generations.

We also pray for COP28 to be held in Dubai, UAE. May concerns put forward about the climate crisis be heard. May there be progress towards a workable solution. Amen.







The 28th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP28) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will be held at Expo City, Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 30 November to 12 December.

The latest science shows that climate change is moving much faster than we are, pushing ecosystems and communities to their limits.

If humanity does not change course, by accelerating the shift away from fossil fuels and building low carbon climate resilient economies, we will miss the chance to limit warming to 1.5°C this century with limited overshoot. Already 3.3-3.6 billion people are vulnerable to climate change impacts, and this number will rapidly increase with rising temperatures.

We need to urgently scale up efforts to help people and nature adapt to a warming world and to implement climate solutions – which are already available across all sectors and can more than halve emissions by 2030. This is vital if we are to limit global warming to 1.5°C and avoid the most devastating impacts on people and nature.

COP28 must be the moment where the world rallies to meet the climate challenge and delivers for people and nature.

COP28 President-Designate, Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber,  has called for a climate action plan that puts the world on the right track to achieve the Paris Agreement’s goals.  He has stated that COP28 UAE will be a milestone moment when the world will take stock of its progress on the Paris Agreement.

WWF’s Expectations Paper lays out our asks for COP28. These include: A phase-out of all fossil fuels and their subsidies, including targets for renewables, energy efficiency and energy access

The first Global Stocktake (GST) will provide a comprehensive assessment of progress since adopting the Paris Agreement. The GST will help align efforts on climate action, including putting measures in place to bridge the gaps in progress.

Our prayers are that the expectations of this vital meeting will be realised and that a clear plan of action is formulated.


2023 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2022 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2021 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2020 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2019 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2018 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

2017 Enviro Prayer Diaries in PDF

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