Going GREEN on St. Paddy’s Day
Written by Plant With Purpose on March 17, 2015 in General
Today we celebrate a holiday of Irish history and folklore. Despite popular misconception, St. Patrick was actually from Britain. Originally captured and taken to Ireland at the age of 16, he is one of the most well known survivors of child slavery. He worked as a shepherd for 6 years before escaping and returning home. Later he felt called to return to Ireland and share the Gospel of Christ.
Because of the remoteness of the British Isles, Irish Christianity developed many unique Celtic traditions. Some of these are familiar to us, including the imagery of Celtic crosses and shamrocks (used to explain the Holy Trinity). St. Patrick’s evangelism in Ireland birthed an evolved version of Christianity that embraced living in community, radical discipleship, pursuit of peace and justice, affirmation of both men and women, and being ‘green’ in its stewardship of the earth (Saving Celtic Spirituality).
The people of Ireland lived in close connection to the natural world with a dependency on the environment for survival. They saw God in creation. As David Adam explains in The Wisdom of the Celts,
“The Celts saw themselves as part of creation and not separate from it, so Columbanus could say, ‘He who tramples on the earth tramples on himself.’”
St. Patrick’s Day offers the opportunity to go green in more ways than one. As we don green attire, cook corned beef, and drink green beer, let’s challenge ourselves to go remember St. Patrick in another way. Spend time reflecting on how connected we are to creation and how creation reflects our Creator. Allow these reflections to move you to action, taking simple steps to reduce our “tramplings” on the earth.
Here are a few ideas for going green:
– Don’t just take your reusable shopping bags to the grocery store—take them with you on all shopping excursions.
– Join the local environmental conversation and participate in a trash pick-up, trail maintenance, or tree planting project.
– Start participating in Meatless Mondays by cooking vegetarian food once a week.
– Invest in a reusable water bottle to fill and take with you.
– Cut down driving time by doing all your errands at once, and carpool to the farmers market, church, or work. You’ll cut back on carbon emissions and create more community!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day from Plant With Purpose!