CAFOD supporters will be marching on Saturday 9 December to call for action from leaders at COP28.
Along with our friends at Christian Aid and Tearfund, we've written a set of prayers for people to say at the rally we'll be holding at St James's Square in London and during our short march to Trafalgar Square.
Praying for polluters
Pray as you pass anything that reminds you of the damage we are doing to the climate.
Lament the ways in which we have destroyed and damaged our world instead of protecting it, and the impact that is having on some of the world’s poorest people.
In London, the march will pass the headquarters of BP, a company which announced profits of £4.7 billion for the first three months of the year. Meanwhile, people around the world are paying for the climate crisis in lost homes, lost livelihoods, lost lives. It’s time to make polluters pay instead.
Lament this exploitation and pray:
We lament that this year climate breakdown has destroyed lives around the world.
Communities suffer floods, fires and drought. People lose their homes, livelihoods and loved ones. We grieve their losses.
We recognise and repent of our broken humanity that has embedded patterns of inequality.
We bear witness to the vast profits of fossil fuel giants who push us deeper into climate chaos, and we bear witness to private creditors who push vulnerable communities into deeper poverty.
We bow our heads.
Pray that COP28 will deliver an agreement to phase out all fossil fuels and shift to clean energy for all.
Ask God that the voices of communities worst affected by the climate emergency will be heard above the influence and lobbying of fossil fuel companies.
Pray that we will see action to make the biggest polluters change their practices and bear the costs of the climate crisis which they have caused.
Praying for communities around the world
Around the globe, communities are being driven into deeper poverty by the climate crisis. Those who have done least to cause the problem, and have the least resources to deal with its impacts, are bearing the brunt of the ‘loss and damage’ of climate change. As you walk around your own neighbourhood and community spaces, pray for our global neighbours.
As floods, droughts and wildfires wreck lives, homes and livelihoods, our hearts break as we recognise the injustice at the heart of the climate crisis: it’s the communities who have done the least to cause it who are most affected.
We pray that as these communities act to recover from climate disasters, and look to adapt to the changing conditions, you will provide protection for them as you did for Noah and his family.
We pray that polluting corporations and nations will listen to the calls of affected communities and change their ways, so all your people may live a full life in peace, love, and prosperity.
Please pray for communities in the global south who are most affected by the climate crisis, yet who are often silenced or excluded by richer countries when climate policy is decided.
Pray for all those affected by the loss of productive farmland and damage to crops and livestock, which means they have less food, lower incomes, fewer opportunities.
Pray for the growing number of people denied access to safe, clean drinking water due to drought, pollution and salinisation.
Praying for our leaders
To see the change we need, we have to see world leaders taking ambitious climate action and decisions. We pray for all those leaders at COP28 but we also look beyond COP28 to the UK general election in 2024. We remember our power as citizens to urge our sitting and prospective candidates to take bold climate action, and action on domestic and global poverty. And we praise almighty God, creator of all things, that it is his restoration plan for the earth that we are pursuing and our hope is secure in him.
Jesus Christ, you are the King of kings, and in your name all things are possible.
We pray for our earthly leaders. May they model your leadership of mercy, justice, and love.
May their hearts break like yours when they see the destruction and pain greed has caused to planet and people.
May they work together to seek solutions which benefit all of creation.