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The Religion of Less Plastic

I received a calendar from the Anglican Communion Environmental Network covering the season of Lent, each day with a suggestion of how to use less plastic. Why? Well it turns out that Anglicans in Canada promise to strive to safeguard the integrity of God’s creation, and respect, sustain and renew the life of the Earth when they are baptized.

Interesting.  If being religious means relating to or believing in a religion, then can refusing, recycling and reusing based on faith become a religious practice?

Looking at this calendar it’s easy to argue yes.

I shared this calendar with a couple of non-Christian friends and asked them for their feedback. They could agree that it made sense, and expressed that it was a cool thing for the church to be doing. Beyond that, it wasn’t an evangelistic moment, merely something to be noted.

Shopping with one of them for groceries later in the week I watched as my friend opted specifically to buy peppers that were not already in a plastic bag, despite them being more expensive than their value pack alternative.

“I’ve never thought about it before,” she said. I put that calendar up on my fridge for the kids and realized there’s a whole bunch of stuff on there I don’t do.”

If a behaviour is repeated based on a belief that it is good for the environment and a “small thing” one can do, are we doing it religiously? Perhaps the answer depends on your use of language. I hope you enjoy the calendar and perhaps find some tips or reminders about saying no to plastics.