We are just a few days away from celebrating the most beautiful holiday of the year for Catholics: the birth of Jesus, the very God who became man and came into the world to save us.
However, it often happens that the chaos of these dates makes us forget the essentials and leads us to unnecessary consumerism, which does not favor our neighbor or our creation.
Pope Francis calls us to move towards “more sustainable lifestyles”. There are ways to live a sustainable Christmas in true fraternity and harmony with our common home and other creatures. Discover these tips to live a Christmas in the spirit of Laudato Si’:
1. Christmas gifts
In Laudato Si’, Pope Francis invites us to choose a different lifestyle in a world where “the market tends to promote extreme consumerism in an effort to sell its products” (LS 203).
When shopping for gifts, spend a few minutes researching ethical and sustainable sources, look for eco-friendly or second-hand products. Decide to cycle or walk instead of using a polluting vehicle. Finally, look for creative wrapping with materials you already have at home.
2. Christmas dinner
Christmas night is also special because of the delicacies we serve at the table. This Christmas, opt for more vegetarian dishes.
Decide to shop at a sustainable store, with products straight from the garden, and with plastic-free packaging.
3. Time with your loved ones
The best part of the holiday season is the time spent with your family. Take time to share experiences with your closest family members, and also with those you don’t frequent so often.
Put aside differences and enjoy the family that God has given you. Organize special games for Christmas Eve, and a creative theme for gift opening.
4. A gift for the Common Home
Reducing your energy consumption can be the best gift to creation. If you’re in the northern hemisphere, choose to dress warmly instead of turning on the heat all day; conversely, if you’re in a warm area, choose to create air currents in your home to keep it cool.
Another option that will help you and will also look nice: light candles on the Christmas table to decorate and also reduce electric light.
We hope these four steps have been helpful in preparing your Christmas celebration. We encourage you to conclude the night praying as a family next to the Manger, Jesus Child is born to renew us in Spirit and encourage us to begin a new year loving creation more.