5 ways to care for Creation during Lent

Whether it’s a big part of your church tradition or not, the season of Lent gives us an opportunity to reflect and consider how we can follow Jesus more closely. What would it look like to walk in step with Christ in responding to the injustice of climate change?

The climate crisis affects all of us, but it’s people in poverty who are suffering first and worst. Governments and businesses have a large part to play in tackling climate change – but we can all use our everyday actions to love our neighbors and build a better, fairer world.

If you’d like to join us in taking new steps to build a better, fairer world this Lent, here are five simple but powerful ways you can make a positive impact – even in lockdown.

Eat seasonally

Food plays a large part in our lives, and perhaps an even bigger role in the lead-up to Easter: from chocolate Easter eggs and Peeps to the all-important Easter Sunday lunch.

Like anything that’s precious, food comes at a cost – and not just the type that you see in your bank balance. There’s also the energy and resources that go into producing and transporting it. The choices we make about what goes on our plates can have a big impact on the climate.

This Lent, why not explore new local, seasonal and plant-based food options? Check out this handy calendar tool to find out what food is in season now where you live. Or consider a less carbon-intensive diet by reducing your meat intake and buying local, responsibly farmed produce. Try some of these delicious plant-based recipes and give yourself a culinary treat!

Buy nothing new

The items we produce and buy as a nation have a huge impact on our carbon footprint. Sadly, many of these are used only once before being thrown away. Not only is this incredibly wasteful, it also uses up valuable energy and resources. Tackling the climate crisis means moving away from a throwaway consumer culture.  Many shops remain closed, but could you challenge yourself to buy only secondhand – for example, via online resale apps or local charity stores? Or could you go a step further and choose not to buy any new clothes or household items this Lent?

Green your energy

Even though we are moving out of winter, it can still feel chilly at home. As many of us continue to spend more time at home than usual, it’s a good opportunity to think about where our energy comes from.

If you’re looking for specific energy-saving ideas this Lent, you could try:

  • Limiting draughts around doors and windows
  • Turning your thermostat down by a few degrees for the remaining cold months
  • Switching electrical appliances off when not in use
  • Layering up when you feel a chill

Go deeper

It may not feel like it, but choosing to learn more about the climate crisis can be a powerful way to get involved in climate action. This Lent, why not dive into some resources around the climate crisis, creation care, or justice?

You may find inspiration from our list of ways to dig deeper into the climate conversation. Or you could set aside time each day to pray for those living in poverty who are being hit the hardest by the climate crisis, theming your prayers around what you’re learning.

On your bike (or feet!)

Before the pandemic, more than a quarter of the carbon emissions in the US came from transport. When it comes to cutting down your carbon footprint, transport is one of the best places to start.

Many of us have been using our cars a lot less since the start of the pandemic. Could you adopt some new cycling or walking habits during Lent that last beyond the lockdowns?

If you don’t have access to a bike, this could be a great time to explore your neck of the woods on foot. It’s a great way to cut down on vehicle emissions, and you’ll be doing your health and your bank balance a favor too.

We would love to hear what action you are taking this Lent to live differently for the climate. Please get in touch by emailing us at [email protected].

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