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Go Tell It on the Mountain
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Go Tell it on the Mountain

“God’s Country” is a phrase you often hear used to describe the rich tapestry of life God has woven in Appalachia. But the destruction of Creation and injustice toward people caused by mountaintop removal has raised the concern of people of faith across America. Six major religious denominations have already passed resolutions in opposition to mountaintop removal (click here to read).

This page is a place for people of all faiths to share their prayers and prayer requests for the people and mountains of Appalachia. We invite you to join them by offering your own prayer; simply send us an email.

God of countless names and infinite goodness…

Rt. Rev. Mark MacDonald is the VII bishop of Alaska of Episcopal Diocese of Alaska.

God of countless names and infinite goodness, your living love is inscribed in every particle of your Creation. As we acknowledge your liberating possession of all the universe, we pray that our life in this world will honor the living relationship that is the union of all that is good; we pray that our life will also create and not destroy. Reveal yourself once again on the Mountaintop and call us home to you and each other. In the name of the living creative Word that you spoke and speak yet today. Amen.


A Prayer for the Mountains

Mary Jane Hitt is the pastor at Providence United Presbyterian Church in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and a West Virginia native.

  O Divine Spirit,
      Spirit of wind and water,
            of mountain and majesty,
                of all creatures great and small:

  Hear our prayer of thanksgiving
      for the world that we take for granted,
          for your gracious gifts that we do not earn,
              for the daily blessings that we do not merit;

Read More….

Blessing of Peace and Justice for the Mountains of Appalachia

Matthew Anderson-Stembridge is a member of the Lutheran Earthkeeping Network for the Synods.

God of Creation – may you bless the mountains and rocks, rivers and valleys, animals and plants which daily sing your praises and remind us of your gracious gift of creation.

God of Grace – may you forgive us our devotion to greed, destruction,
and selfishness so that we might be freed to truly see the other as ourselves and hold
the care of creation in our hearts.

Read More….

Let Justice Roll

Allen Johnson, an evangelical Christian, is co-founder of the West Virginia-based nonprofit organization Christians for the Mountains.

Let Your Justice, O God, be the flood that sweeps through besotted valleys,
Righteousness whose blast shatters the mountain air,
Truth whose echoes never fade,
Peace in this land.

Read More….

Dear Creator

Melissa Gee is the assistant director of OASIS (Opposing Abuse with Service, Information and Shelter) in Boone, North Carolina, and a West Virginia native.

Your Handiwork, which You called good, exists only for and through You, but I thank you for the joy and protection we receive from Your amazing works.

The beauty of these mountains leaves me breathless and full of peace. Every tree, stream, and mountain is exactly where you have placed it. Your all-knowing hand molded this land perfectly. Although we may never know the reasons behind your plan, help us remember that we are living as part of Your Creation.

Read More….

Contributed Prayers


a poem written after attending I Love Mountains Day 2011 in Frankfort, KY
by Derek Brown, University of Kentucky

It stood,
tall above the crowd.
Beside the Capital steps.
The needles reflecting
the early spring sun.

It was not the first time
it had seen
this very blood

beaten down by the black, bastard,
gringo companies.
The King
of a foreign land.

A subtle reminder
of the forested spirit.

If these walls could talk?
If these trees could see!

Alive and growing,
Conscious and knowing?

What would they say after all?
The aged noble pine.
On which side
would fall the divine?

A Call To Humanity

Submitted by Rev. Kait Delapoer

Be at peace now
Still the heart, the mind, the spirit
Be certain and clear and remember her now
She is our mother, our life support, our blessing
Breathe her essence into your heart and hold on
Release her love through gratitude
Know that she will survive

Be at peace now
Still the heart, the mind, the spirit
Be certain and clear and remember now
The preciousness of all life
Breathe this memory into your heart and hold on
Release this thoughtform through gratitude
Know that this will not be forgotten, however…

Blessed Humanity Please Be Concerned:

Remember the preciousness of all life! We are only as healthy and as vibrant as the blessed earth beneath our feet.  Honor the earth and remember that she too, Is a being of life.  She is a living breathing, being of life who has not been honored by mankind.  When we honor the earth, we honor ourselves.  When we dishonor the earth through destruction we dishonor ourselves by limiting future generations the opportunity of experiencing natural beauty.  The earth offers humanity the gift of multi-dimensional wisdom through experiencing its magnificent natural beauty.  Through spirit the human sensory system is capable of accessing this sacred wisdom and beauty.  You might say that this is a type of technology that will never be available for future generations if mankind continues to destroy the earth.  The earth is our salvation.  Remember her every day as the mother of humanity.  Is this anyway to treat your beloved mother?  Time is of the essence now.  We must not stop or hesitate or even pause for a moment without knowing that it is our responsibility to take action on behalf of the earth.  If humanity becomes complacent and forgetful, the luxury of hesitation will turn into a motherless child.  Bless this earth now with presence of mind and insist that your voice be heard.

Bless all humanity!


Submitted by Carole Madan, “Momma Nature”, An evangelical Christian who has been saving native environments for 40 years.

Please forgive us for allowing the desecration of Your holy mountains.

Send a message to our children and grandchildren that we will stop blasting of mountain tops in the name of greed.

Let us be strong in the knowledge that You want us to be active in our prayers, lives, churches, temples and synagogues to bring Light to the dark evil that takes joy in making money from killing what we love.

Our air, water and soil is being killed even as we stand and watch. We will come together as one to speak for the trees, streams and future generations who need our voice.

Thank you for the beauty and magnificence of our natural world. Give all who feel Your love the strength to carry on and let your Angels surround us and keep us protected.

the earth was once a playground

a poem submitted by:

the earth was once a playground
not ours
not matter what belief
before us there were animals
there was sun

it is not for us to dishevel
you would not want someone to harm you
let us not be hypocrites
and indulge in what earth has given us
from the beginning
mother nature cannot live on life support

God Bless

Received on the Prayer Line of the Holy Cross Chapel and Catholic Resource Center, Houston, Texas

Thank you and God bless you!

Let me be an instrument of Your peace.

Submitted by Beverly, Aaron, and Kaylee Donovan of Burgess, VA

Father you see and know that your mountains are being destroyed by a select few.

Please guide and direct them to a better way of life.

Please bless all the good people who are working to stop mountaintop removal.

Please help me be an instrument of your peace.

This we pray in Your name, Amen.

Finding a strip mine out in the woods

A poem submitted by Angelyn DeBord. She is an Appalachian-born and raised storyteller, actress, playwright and workshop leader from Gate City, VA.

***From a distance *

*the sound is of birds *


*threatened by my approach*

*their flight *

*is imminent.*

*that is the sound…*

*as I draw nearer*

* *

Prayer for the Mountains

Submitted by Beth Lapides, author of “Did I Wake You? Haiku’s For Modern Living”

I give thanks for the mountain I live by, that drew me to it, magnetized me.

I ask for the strength of it. To protect other mountains, which protect us.

I offer my heart to the ground disprupted.

I wait for guidance to help create the world in which we can live by and with the mountains peacefully.

Love to all mountains, and all the valleys that the mountains define.  In this moment and forever more.

Lord, Please give me strength

Submitted by Joe Burrell of Reedville, VA

When I visited Kayford Mountain, WV for the first time I experienced a number of emotions:

Horror – How could anybody do this to the beautiful mountains

Shame – To be part of the human race that perpetrates such a crime

Sadness – Those sites will never be beautiful again

Anger – I hated Massey and the others

Helplessness – What can anybody do to change things

Joy – A lot of good people are working on it

Hope – Progress is being made

Lord, please give me the strength to harness these emotions to work for positive change. Help me turn hate to love, and treat those who agree with mountaintop removal with the repect and dignity they deserve. Help me find the strength to continue working for what is right.

Prayers of the Faithful

Submitted by Frances Burrell, a Roman Catholic from the Northern Neck of Virginia

Carla Mullis, photo by Kent KessingerLector: For the people in the Appalachian coalfields.
May they get what they need and be treated with respect and dignity
Congregation: We Pray To The Lord

Lector: For the poor, the sick and the elderly there
Congregation: We Pray To The Lord

Lector: For all miners. May they have safe working conditions,
and receive better pay and benefits for the hard work they are doing
Congregation: We Pray To The Lord

Lector: For all the people who are working to end Mountaintop Removal.
Give them strength, courage and wisdom
Congregation: We Pray To The Lord

A Prayer Call to Act

Contributed by NuLiForm

Don’t know about you, but i pray Fervently that mankind comes to their senses. After the Resurection, as He was leaving them, the Apostals asked Yeshua, “Where can we find you?? He simply replied, “Look for me in the Wood.? He did not say look for me in any church, with walls. Mankind has never understood this.

Yeshua always taught that All life Needs all other life to survive in this beautiful world which sustains us, that we are All interdependent upon each other, and must Accept each other, Co-exist, man, beast, every living thing, according to Yahwey’s plan. Mankind has never understood this.

We were All created by Yahwey, and All are Loved by Yahwey. Mankind has never understood this either.

Who are We to decide what life is more worthy than any other? Somehow, i got it, and from the very first time I was taught to pray, I prayed for All living creatures and the world upon which we all live. Walking the talk, I made it my life’s mission to help others ‘get it’ too.

We are the ‘oddballs’ you see on street corners and wooded lots, protesting clearcutting, mining, extinction, talking about Respecting the Earth and our fellow creatures. We push the envelope and ruffle a lot of feathers by pestering governments and business to be reasonable. We teach anyone who will listen how to do the same, and why we should never give up.

The Time has Come, and nearly Gone, for mankind to understand. One has only to Sincerely care, open their eyes and look around to see this is true and happening Now. The world is changing, re-arranging, right before our very eyes, and we in our ignorance, arrogance, and silence, are rushing this upheaval with our toxic, all consuming, thoughtless Greed.

Soon Yahwey will simply scratch us up as another loss and start over, as is the Natural game plan for All worlds. Then, mankind will not need to understand anymore, because mankind will cease to exist… as it should be if mankind is so defective as that. Look around you my friend, the mountains really are crumbling into the sea.

Pray, yes, pray our hearts out, but obviously we Must do More than that if we are to Change anything.

Pretty words and poetic prose look nice and make us smile, but they do little more than that. The clock is ticking down Fast. Yeshua also taught us to Act against injustice, to Help, and Protect the less able, remember? What would Yeshua say to us Now? Can you hear him? If not, maybe you are not looking in the right place.


Submitted by Sheridan Bushnell

The mountains know our history.
They hold the hardness of our struggle,
Releasing but a few grains
To the soft earth below.

Trees speak the language of our hearts.
Softly pulsating the life blood,
Of our lung’s longing, they wait,
Watching the river’s flow,

Over and through
The rocky remnants of our resistance,
Waiting the awakening,

As the young mother watches,
Her infant stir in its crib,
Its newness to the world,
Opening wide the door to her heart.

In the adolescence
Of our souls,
We must so thoroughly reject
That which has fed us for so long.

We shall return
When the ego is strong enough
To realize,
The pain of the separation
Was but a mirage of the mind.

I Just can’t believe it

Contributed by Dan Siler of Robbinsville, NC

As I grew up here in NC, mining and hard rock jobs were a common part of my life. I was a part of 4 generations. First, I worked the jack legs underground, then I graduated to operating the air tracks above ground and learned to use powder.

Now, building a beautiful road for others to see Gods handiwork is one thing. But the absolute and total removal of a mountaintop is wrong. I don’t care whose standards you judge by. Coal will always play out. My Mom was born in Welch, West Va. and her whole family wound up moving as big coal played out. I have made many trips outta the hole just to watch the power go off. I helped load and seen the tops of mountaintop quarries be removed. And how long, how long before it all lands here in N.C.

I just hope there are those who will forgive me for destroying nature. I hope our creator does!


A poem submitted by Angelyn DeBord. She is an Appalachian-born and raised storyteller, actress, playwright and workshop leader from Gate City, VA.

Creeper Trail photo by Kent KessingerI think of the children,
they’re young and they’re willing,
to lift up their wings and to fly.

But their way it is tangled,
don’t let them be mangled,
by the greed that we
pass down the line.

I lift mine eyes up now unto these hills
from whence always my help it has come.
I holler, “God help us,
Man’s greed it has scalped us,
for a strange definition of wealth.”

The mountains we love now,
God knows they’re our home now,
they’ve helped, they’ve held us for years.
But the land of our mother is now seeking cover
as the bulldozers strip off her crown.

What God has created,
Man’s greed’s laid asunder.
You can’t build a mountain back up.
But our children have voices,
let’s raise them to use them,
together we can save this land.

Yes, together we can save this land.

Say: together we can save this land.

Pray: together we can save this land.

Appalachian Voices  •  Coal River Mountain Watch  •   Heartwood  •  Keeper of the MountainsKentuckians for the Commonwealth 

Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition  •   Statewide Organizing for Community eMpowermentSierra Club Environmental Justice

Southern Appalachian Mountain Stewards  •   SouthWings  •  Stay Project  •   West Virginia Highlands Conservancy

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