Faith in fine, fresh, fair local foods

Cucumber Slices

Cucumber Slices

Three examples this week of faith-based work in support of sustainable food systems wake me up to how quickly faith congregations can change habits and help save the earth. (Some wonderful educational institutions are already leading toward sustainability, as are a few corporations. I'm less sure about government bodies.)

A beloved niece, entering the second of two years as president of her synagogue, tells me persuading the congregation to install and use composting systems is high on her agenda for this year.

Second, from someone dear to a beloved son, I learn about successful efforts to set up a CSA (farm subscription) at a synagogue in Chicago. A short story in a newsletter (PDF, 241K) from the synagogue tells about cooking with the good food from the farm, and includes an inspired recipe for cucumbers on page 2.

Third, while on vacation this week I read Matthew Sleeth's Serve God Save the Planet, a polestar book for many of my beloved neighbors, members of a Christian-based faith community that takes on the world's toughest issues, including homelessness, hunger, and saving our literal earth, air, and water.

When institutions lead, lots of people get exposed to new habits and new satisfactions quickly. In the words of the excellent Bill McKibben: Step it up!