On Thursday, April 22nd, Pennsylvania Interfaith Power and Light (PA IPL) hosted an Interfaith Prayer Vigil for Earth Day in LewisburgLarry Herrold, Jr., LAMPa’s Hunger Advocacy Fellow, attended the event with several other leaders in the central Susquehanna Valley faith community, offering prayers to mark the occasion. The event was held in conjunction with Lewisburg Neighborhoods and the CommUnityZone 

The intimate service was held outdoors in a downtown municipal lot off Market Street. Those in attendance gathered near the creek, accompanied by a boisterous family of ducks, to read prayers and offer reflection on the significance of environmental stewardship in their respective traditionsScripture and prayer were offered in Arabic, English, and Hebrew, from Christian, Islamic, and Jewish tradition. Herrold, with the PA IPL director and leadership from Bucknell University, planted the first of what will be many trees on the lot. 

“It was wonderful to gather with colleagues outdoors to celebrate Earth Day after a year of gathering remotely due to the pandemic.” says Herrold. “We’ve gathered virtually for so long; it was powerful to be present together in praying for God’s creation and getting our hands dirty whilst planting.” 

The tree planting was the start of PA IPL’s larger project, organizing the planting of one-hundred trees to create a riparian buffer zone along the creek flowing through the downtown. This project will strengthen the soils, provide new habitat, and enhance the recreational possibilities for the land. They will be holding an Arbor Day event, on April 30th, to finish the planting. Details on the event can be found here.

Events such as these are fantastic opportunities to safely care for and celebrate God’s creation with our communities. LAMPa staff have been hard at work collaborating with and participating in such events with our partners. Tracey DePasquale, LAMPa’s director, participated in a panel discussion during United Lutheran Seminary’s Spring Convocation in addition to advocacy teach-in events around the topic of creation care. Seminarian and LAMPa Intern Margaret Folkemer-Leonard, meanwhile, has coordinated the sharing of soil samples from across the commonwealth to be utilized in synod rogation services during the growing season.  

Watch the recording of United Lutheran Seminary’s Spring Convocation worship here, and check out our page on rogation stories and prayers from across Pennsylvania. 

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