Many people make time and a commitment during the Season of Lent to reflect and act in different ways than their normal life. This is a beautiful opportunity to change our regular pattern of life and begin a new pattern in the hopes of fostering a relationship with God, ourselves and even others. This lent Seeds is specifically focusing on how we get grow the relationship between ourselves and God’s creation. The planet that is our everyday home. The following are a list of practices that move us to both take ACTION and to slow down to REFLECT. It might feel overwhelming at first to see so many ideas in one place and maybe you have already made one of these ideas an aspect of your daily life. We hope and pray that this season will deepen your connection to God, yourself, and to others (including our beautiful world we live in.)
Cultivate contentment. Enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Spend time in nature. Build community.
Spend some time each day outside. Breathe deeply. Look up. Listen. Give thanks for this wondrous home we’ve been given.
Read and reflect on these passages:
Isaiah 58:1-12. Consider these questions: What are we asked to do? What can we do to be restorers today?
Read and reflect on the Canticle of the Sun by St. Francis of Assisi:
Educate yourself. Sign up for newsletters and email updates about environmental issues that are important to you.
Fast from Single-Use Plastic – Commit to refusing all bags, cutlery, lids, bottles, straws
carry a to-go pack with you when you leave the house (reusable straws/forks/cutlery/travel mug)
bring a leftover container with you if you go out for a meal
remember to use reusable shopping bags/boxes
use reusable produce bags or reuse plastic bags you already have
Begin Buying in Bulk
Prairie Foods sells fruit by the case
Bulk Barn allows you to refill your own container or buy items by the case
Pure Anada in Winkler carries bulk dishwashing detergent, laundry detergent, household cleaners, shampoo, conditioner, etc
Recycling – Beyond Your Blue Bin
Fluorescent bulbs and paint cans – Coop Hardware
Batteries – Blue Sky (bundle them for blue bin or drop off on north side of recycling depot)
Scrap Metal – Blue Sky (bin on north side of recycling depot)
Electronics – Blue Sky (bin on north side of recycling depot)
Purchase local milk in glass, returnable bottles (available at Coop)
Shampoo and conditioner bars are a low-waste option – available at Hair Ecstasy, 12 Spa and the Altona Flower Shop
Replace your plastic toothbrush with bamboo – available at O’Naturelle
Repairing clothes and footwear whenever possible (Party and Gift Shop does mending/altering, K/C’s shoe repair will repair shoes and bags)
Consider using a menstrual cup, period-proof undies or washable menstrual pads.
Fast from Fossil Fuels: Need to go 1 mile or less? Walk or bike. Better for you, better for the planet. Need to go further? Share a ride with someone or consider the 90 by 90 rule – 90% of the time travel at 90km/hr which is a more fuel-efficient speed. Limit or eliminate recreational driving and motor sports.
Download Ecosia as your internet browser; Ecosia plants trees around the world with its profits.
Plant and tend some trees this summer; consider inviting other friends/families to join you in this project.
Reducing poverty is an effective way to fight climate change and environmental injustice. Give generously to MEDA, MCC, MDS, Greenpeace or other organizations you trust who are working to raise people out of poverty and to protect the environment.
Eat local food as much as possible. Plant a garden and/or buy food from farmer’s markets or local producers. Learn how to can and preserve food.
Eat less or no meat for a more efficient use of the world’s resources. Meatlessmonday.org is a great way to start.
Consider the impact of streaming services on the environment. Internet servers take an enormous amount of energy to be cooled. Consider too the impact of media on your well-being and that of your family.
Limit your household water use. Catch the water that is wasted waiting for the shower to get hot and flush your toilet with that. Use a timer in the shower. Turn the shower off while lathering. Run only full loads in the washer and dishwasher.
Check your tire pressure today. Low tire pressure means high energy/fuel consumption.
Get a smart thermostat that lowers the temperature automatically at night or when you’re not home.
In the middle of raising young children and don’t have time or energy for anything else? Helping your kids appreciate the wonder and beauty of nature is one of the most important things you can do for the planet. Stopping on a walk to investigate a bug, smelling flowers, gardening, caring for pets or houseplants…these are all simple ways to allow children’s natural curiosity about the world around them lead you both into appreciating our world more deeply.