A Challenge for Lent 2014 
For Christians, Lent is the time when we reflect on the 40 days Jesus spent in the wilderness, facing challenge and temptation. We often use Lent to think about God's deeper purposes for us and as a period of self-discipline, giving up something which we normally use or enjoy. 
Salisbury Diocese is encouraging us all to focus on our care for God's creation. Many of us already do a lot, but the season of Lent gives us an opportunity to take some further steps toward a sustainable world. So, St Laurence's Eco-Group has produced a calendar, suggesting small changes we might make during Lent. 
Many of the ideas are things we have heard before but when life gets busy we all sometimes need reminders. Others may be new to you. So whether it's getting back into a good habit that may have slipped, or whether it's starting something new - please do think about what we can each do to live in a more sustainable way. There are further suggestions on the Eco-Group noticeboard in St Laurence church, and of course lots of information is available on the internet, in the press or on the television. 
We hope that all the members of the family, young and old alike, will enjoy taking part in this challenge. 
Thank you for taking part in this Challenge! 
Week One 5th-9th March: WATER 
To conserve the precious resource of clean water (remembering all those affected by the recent flooding): 
Take a shower rather than a bath 
Turn off the tap when you clean your teeth 
Run the washing machine & dishwasher on full loads 
Use environmentally friendly detergents & cleaning products (this avoids polluting the water and damaging wildlife) 
Week Two 10th-16th March: TRAVEL 
To travel in a way that reduces our impact on the environment: 
Where possible, make short journeys on foot or cycle 
Share your car when travelling to an event or work 
Plan to use one journey for a number of tasks 
Shop locally 
Use public transport where you can 
Week Three 17th-23rd March: 
To minimise our contribution to landfill, and to reuse/recycle as much as possible: 
Put as much in your recycling boxes as possible. Don't forget clean aluninium foil, clothes & shoes, aerosol cans. 
Use the Household Recycling Centre to rcycle rigid plastic, drinks cartons, batteries, electrical appliances etc. (but avoid making a separate journey - see week Two!!) 
Use your own shopping bags and say no to offered plastic carriers 
Write or print on both sides of a piece of paper; re-use envelopes 
Week Four 24th-30th March: SPENDING 
To think about the environmental impact of our spending choices: 
Check out the local charity shops instead of buying new 
If something breaks, try and fix it rather than replace it 
Don't give in to advertising! Before buying something ask yourself if you really need it. 
WEEK FIVE 31st March–6th April: FOOD 
To shop, cook and eat more sustainably, and to avoid waste: 
Try a meat free day! (producing meat uses up more resources) 
Buy local and seasonal foods wherever possible – and think about growing your own 
Buy fairly traded products such as tea, coffee and chocolate 
Make a meal from leftovers – you may be surprised what you can do 
Plan meals in advance using a shopping list to avoid supermarket temptations 
WEEK SIX 7th-13th April: POWER 
To conserve energy, so saving money and producing less carbon dioxide: 
Turn the thermostat down by one degree or wear an extra jumper 
Turn off unnecessary lights and heating 
Only fill the kettle with as much water as you need 
Don’t leave equipment (TVs, computers etc) on standby 
Try to avoid using the tumble drier 
To reflect and thank God for his great love. As Spring returns, try to find time to enjoy God’s creation, and celebrate being part of it: 
Take a walk: in the Forest, by the river or in the Moot 
Sit in the garden or churchyard for half an hour 
Encourage children to find out more about the birds, insects and plants they’ve seen 
Plan how to make your garden more wildlife friendly 
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