Prieres - 7 April 2016

en - Celebration of Water

Here are some elements that you might like to use in a celebration of that beautiful gift of God, water. They can be selected by you to create your own liturgy. An introduction might be to find out where your water comes from and to trace its journey after use. The centrepiece might be a bowl of fresh water round which you can centre your prayer. Put your hand in it and make the sign of the cross, let the water bless you. If you are able to walk at the waterside, by a river or stream, stop and listen, what is the water saying to you?

Possible Hymns: - `O living water, refresh my soul…..’ `Water of Life, cleanse and refresh us…..’

Thanksgiving for the gift of water Water is a source of beauty and wonder, seas rivers lakes and streams, it is a source of refreshment and cleansing, of renewal. Above all it is necessary for all life. It quenchesthirst, it is the element used for Baptism, symbol of the Spirit, the gift of living water and `eternal life’. `Springs of water, bless the Lord, praise and exalt Him for above all for ever. Seas and rivers, bless the Lord, praise and exalt Him above all for ever. (Dan 3:77-78)

Praise be you, my Lord through Sister Water who is so humble, precious, pure and chaste. We praise and thank you Lord for the gift of living water Guide us to use it wisely learn from its humility and protect its purity, so that with St Francis we may truly enjoy water. Amen

For desert dwellers courtesy demanded that a drink be offered to a thirsty traveller even if it had to be drawn from a deep well. Let us praise the Lord for all those who give to travellers on their way, may they too, receive Your blessing. Lamentation and repentance for our misuse of water We are misusing our world and because of that we are threatened with rising oceans, droughts, ever more terrifying tropical storms and hurricanes bring flooding and destruction, mudslides and erosion of topsoil. We need an `ecological conversion’. We need to recognise fresh water for the treasure that it is as a finite resource. The Biblical prophets speak of the `mighty waters destroying the existing order. Assyria overflows and floods Israel ` like a mighty river’ (Isaiah 8:7)

Response: have mercy on us, O Lord, mayjustice flow like running streams.

• Let us pray for those without access to clean water, a common good, privatized for profit so beyond the reach of many.R

• Forgive us for our misuse of water, our waste, and the polluting of the carrier of life by industrial processes, mining, agricultural fertilizers, contamination of groundwater from toxic waste sites, and other wastes.R

• Climate change manifests itself most powerfully within then water cycle, forgive us of that human activity which increases the likelihood of water related disasters, floods and droughts.R

• The World Bank makes loans conditional on privatization of water and other services. Trade agreements make it possible for multinationals to sue national governments in secret, for instance in the case of renationalisation of water R

Add your own prayers from your local situation.

Conversion and blessing. `Jesus stood there and cried out: - If anyone is thirsty, let them come to me Let them come and drink who believes in me, (John 7:37-38) As scripture says `from His breast shall flow fountains of living water. He was speaking of the Spirit…. A spring of water welling up to eternal life

Then the angel showed me the river of life, rising from the throne of God and from the Lamb and flowing crystal clear down the middle of the street. On either side of the river were the trees of life…. The leaves of which are for the healing of the nations. (Rev 22: 1 – 2)

Further resources: - Creator God, whose Spirit moved over the face of the waters, who gathers the seas into their places and directs the courses of the rivers, who sends rain upon the earth that it should bring forth life: we praise you for the gift of water. Create in us such a sense of wonder and delight in this and all your gifts, that we might receive them with gratitude, care for them with love, and generously share them with all your creatures, to the honour and glory of your holy name.

Joseph Mary Plunkett

I see his blood upon the rose And in the stars, the glory of his eyes, His body gleams amid eternal snows, His tears fall from the skies.

I see his face in every flower; The thunder and the singing of the birds Are but his voice – and carven by his power Rocks are his written words.

All pathways by his feet are worn, His strong heart stirs the ever-beating sea, His crown of thorns is twined with every thorn, His cross is every tree.

Thanksgiving We return thanks to our mother, the earth, which sustains us. We return thanks to the rivers and streams, which supply us with water. We return thanks to all herbs, which furnish medicines for the cure of our diseases. We return thanks to the moon and stars, which have given to us their light when the sun was gone. We return thanks to the sun, that has looked upon the earth with a beneficent eye. Lastly, we return thanks to the Great Spirit, in Whom is embodied all goodness, and Who directs all things for the good of Her children.


“Father, you give us grace through sacramental signs, which tell us of the wonders of your unseen power. In baptism we use your gift of water, which you have made a rich symbol of the grace you give us in this sacrament. At the very dawn of creation your Spirit breathed on the waters, making them the wellspring of all holiness. The waters of the great flood you made a sign of the waters of baptism that make an end of sin and a new beginning of goodness. Through the waters of the Red Sea you led Israel out of slavery to be an image of God’s holy people, set free from sin by baptism. In the waters of the Jordan your Son was baptized by John and anointed with the Spirit. Your Son willed that water and blood should flow from his side as he hung upon the cross. After his resurrection he told his disciples, ‘Go out and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.’ Father, look now with love upon your Church and unseal for it the fountain of baptism. By the power of the Holy Spirit, give to this water the grace of your Son, so that in the sacrament of baptism all those you have been created in your likeness may be cleansed from sin and rise to a new birth of innocence by water and the Holy Spirit.”

Respecting the environement

Water contributes to life, but it can also destroy: drowning is an example. There is no life without water, it is the sign of life itself. We are trying to discover whether there is any water, any sign of life on other planets. The Bible begins with the picture of the Spirit hovering above the water covering the earth, at the dawn of creation. And it is from the water itself that the earth emerges, as well as the reptiles and other forms of life, small and great. Water nourishes the earth which brings forth different forms of life. Even the separation of elements is a sign of life, while a mixing together of these elements brings confusion and chaos. The Great Flood is an example of this: everything is destroyed in this great watery catastrophe. Humankind is called to live in harmony with creation and to respect its integrity. Water conservation is a precious commodity for us today, but also for future generations: water brings us nourishment and it will bring nourishment and the capacity to enjoy the power, strength, and beauty of living water. Succeeding generations will be able to say as we do: “It is so refreshing to have a good drink of water!”