God’s Love in Christ for the Whole Creation – Reconciliation and Unity

The first plenary session of the General Assembly celebrated today the purpose of God’s love in Christ for the whole creation, reconciling all things on earth and in heaven through the blood of the cross (Col. 1:19f. Eph. 1:10).

In the morning prayer  the heart of the liturgical action was a combining of vessels of water from each inhabited region of the earth, a “gathering of the waters” reflecting the earliest act of creation in Genesis 1:9.

THE GATHERING OF THE WATERS
L: God said, “Let the waters under the sky
be gathered together into one place”
(Gen. 1:9). The water carries our stories.
W: I bring water as a symbol of the water
from the Pacific….
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from Latin America….
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from Africa…..
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from North America….
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from Asia….
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from Europe…..
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from the Caribbean….
I bring water as a symbol of the water
from the Middle East….
L: We are nourished, sustained and
connected.
We depend on all life on our planet.
We are united in Christ in baptism.
We are purified.
We are blessed.

In the beginning of the plenary session we heard the message of the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew who called the climate change as the greatest threat to our planet, describing a need for repentance “from indiscriminate habits and destructive practices toward other people and in relation to nature’s resources.” 

Julia Rensberg, delegate of the Church of Sweden and representative of the Sami Council within the Swedish Church, offered reflections on the assembly theme from their own perspectives and context. “We Indigenous live at the border of the climate crisis,” she said and explained how she sees firsthand the climate crisis affecting nature. Living on the border of a climate zone “our livelihoods, our culture and languages are equally threatened.”

Topics which are also on the agenda of the General Assembly:

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