Lent is a time when we usually challenge ourselves to make some difficult choices about our lifestyle. This year we would like to encourage parishioners to focus some of those choices on the need to tackle climate change.
We all know that we need to change the way we live in order to heal the planet. Perhaps by harnessing the discipline of Lent we can all start to make our own contributions to the enormous challenge.
Each week during Lent we are going to highlight a different topic and suggest some individual and collective actions. By no means are we suggesting that everything will be possible for everyone. We are offering them by way of suggestions in the hope that everyone
can embrace some. The topics will be:
- The Natural World
WEEK 1 – FOOD
Food production is responsible for about a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. In the UK alone the food we waste generates around 20 million tonnes of carbon emissions. So this Lent maybe you could try to:
- Enjoy one meat-free day a week
- Buy locally sourced food
- Join us for Family Fast Day on 6 March
WEEK 2 – FASHION
Second to fossil fuels, the clothing and textile industry is the largest polluter in the world. The fashion industry contributes 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions as well as nearly 20% of global waste water.
- Pledge not to buy any new clothes for 40 days or longer
- Learn to “Make do and Mend”
- Swap, lend and borrow your clothes with friends and family
WEEK 3 – PLASTIC
Around 8 million tonnes of plastic end up in the ocean every year and this figure is set to double by 2025. We can stop so much of it becoming waste by reducing the amount of plastic we buy, use once and then put in the bin.
- Carry a reusable cup or bottle
- Buy unwrapped fruit and vegetables
- Find replacements for cling film and disposable wipes
WEEK 4 – THE NATURAL
WORLD (22 March)
God created this beautiful home for us and it is our responsibility to care for it. Yet as every day passes we become more aware of the damage we are doing. So how can we live in a way that respects the gift of creation that God has given to us?
- Take the time each day to enjoy nature
- Make your garden a haven for birds, bees and butterflies
- Support tree planting schemes
WEEK 5 – ENERGY
Using non-renewable sources of energy (fossil fuels) leads to climate change, reduces species diversity and destroys our environment. In the UK, renewable energy accounts for over 30% of electricity generated.
- Turn your lights off when leaving a room
- Turn your thermostat down 1 degree
- Switch your energy provider to one that supplies renewable energy
WEEK 6 – TRANSPORT
Transport accounts for around 30% of UK greenhouse gas emissions. As we approach Palm Sunday when Jesus entered Jerusalem, we ask you to consider coming to mass on foot if you are able.
- For children – can you scoot, skate or cycle to mass
- Walk, cycle or use public transport to reduce short car journeys
- Reduce air-travel