Over the 40 days of Lent, learn about eco-justice (caring for creation and all humans in it) and take action on the issues of waste, energy, water, consumption, and food. Join the Saint James’ Green Team on your Lenten journey by taking this calendar and a mite box, which are available in the Parish Hall. You or your child may choose one thing to take on or give up from the list of actions below compiled by our youth and/or follow the daily devotional adapted from PCUSA Earth Ministries. In our mite box, we will deposit “fines” for not sticking to our chosen discipline or the daily devotional. The boxes will then be collected on Easter Day, and the money designated for a green action.
Deposit fines if you don’t turn off lights as you leave rooms. Consider installing movement sensors so lights only activate when needed.
Deposit fines for every set of closed drapes, blinds, or shutters.
The sun is the cheapest and most environmentally sound heat and light source.
Deposit fines for each secondary appliance that remains plugged in and consumes energy when not in use. TVs, computers, and CD players can consume almost as much energy when in standby mode as they do during the relatively small amount of time they’re being used.Deposit fines every time you or someone in your family turns up the thermostat in your home. Install a thermostat with timer.
Deposit fines every time you let the water run while brushing your teeth instead of turning it off until rinsing.Deposit fines for every minute you let the water run to “warm up the shower.”
Deposit fines for each time you run your dishwasher, washing machine, fill a mop bucket, or take a bath and create something known as “Gray Water”. Gray water can be used again to water your garden, if it contains only biodegradable soaps and cleaners.
Deposit fines every time you throw something recyclable in the trash. Purchase a separate bin.
Deposit fines for each item you throw away that could have been composted. Pretty much anyorganic matter can find a home in a compost pile or bin. Then, you have a nutritious soil enhancer, and you’re doing your part to reduce landfill waste.
Deposit fines for each cleaning item in your home that includes chemicals that are deemed bad for the environment. Several brands of non-toxic, biodegradable cleaning products are available at both natural grocery shops and chain stores.
Deposit fines for each item in your home that is deemed as disposable vs. things that are reusable. Many things come in reusable forms, so choose reusable food containers over plastic wrap. Choo se rechargeable batteries over the conventional single-use kind. Use rags, towels, and cloth napkins instead of paper ones.
Deposit fines for each harmful item in your garage, basement,or kitchen sink cupboard such as Styrofoam, old paint cans, used motor oil, garden pesticides and weed killers, used batteries, old computers or electronics, harsh cleaning chemicals, or pest killers. The Fauquier County dump accepts all these items.
Deposit fines for each mile you drove to day. If you commute on a regular basis, look into carpooling or alternative means of transportation. If you live and work in Old Town, take a walk to work.
Deposit fines for each piece of paper used in filing your tax return. If you are able, file your taxes electronically to cut back on paper usage. You can look into having your tax forms emailed to you instead of mailed. Deposit fines for each old newspaper or plastic grocery bag in your home. Donate old newspapers to animal shelters and take your plastic shopping bags back to participating grocery stores. Better yet, purchase cloth or canvas grocery bags and skip that part altogether.
Deposit fines each time you buy a plastic bottle of water. Make it a habit to carry a reusable water bottle instead. You can even buy one with a built-in filter to avoid tap water if that’s important to you.
Deposit fines each time you use one side of paper instead of using both sides to do work or drawing.