United for the Earth, our Common Home

Photos by Iyolosiwa Ayutla

To mark Mother Earth Day, the Iyolosiwa team in Ayutla and Cecile united in prayer. With touching spirit, we asked pardon for harm done, for our passivity, indifference, consumerism, the invasion of mining, and all of the situations that have wounded Mother Earth.

In our celebration, we offered seeds of corn, beans, squash, and rice, which are the basic foods harvested by our people during the year.

Taking up the living tradition of the original peoples, we offered God copal, a type of incense found in the region, so that our prayers might be lifted to heaven on its gentle, soft odor.

We began this ceremony by incensing one another as a sign of purification so that we might leave aside our burdens and be in complete harmony with nature that is all around us. So too the offering was incensed as a way of giving thanks to Mother Earth for the seeds which give us food. During this rite, we were accompanied by the song, “Nuestro Dios,” that narrates the marvelous action of God in creating the whole of the natural world. With one voice, we proclaimed the Hymn of the Universe, taken from Genesis.

Using Psalm 135, we gave thanks to our Father-Mother God for his/her infinite mercy on each one of us. We recognized that God fills us with blessings day by day, in spite of our actions that are contrary to Life.

We finished this part of the prayer by offering our personal intentions to God who listens and attends to us. We asked especially for our needs and that all of those who inhabit our common home be able to care for her, protect her, and take actions that allow us to be one with her.

As a sign of hope, we lit a candle for each prayer and asked that all we prayed would be received for our own good and the good of everyone.

United with creation, we closed by praying the Prayer for our Earth that Pope Francis invited us to pray in his encyclical, Laudato Si (paragraph 246).

Iyolosiwa Ayutla, Mexico
April 2016