Monday, March 6, 2006

BIKING FOR LENT

Stan Ingersol pointed out an article in SojoMail (Sojourner magazine’s weekly e-mail) titled “Biking as a Lenten Practice” by Melissa Bixler. Good read.

FASTING FROM AUTOS? No joke: mobility is one of the major--if overlooked--aspects of our daily lives. Americans consume massive amounts of the world’s natural and energy resources in our daily auto-consumption. We drive willy-nilly without a second thought about the impacts of our petroleum-powered commutes--neither from the standpoint of greenhouse gases nor cost impacts on others. A forty-day experience of using pedal power instead of petroleum power for at least some part of daily travel might yield some creative insights that can shape the future.

"SLOW, DOWN, YOU MOVE TOO FAST." Certainly, biking instead of driving an auto sets a different pace and heightens exposure to people and the community. Biking, one can identify with the multiple millions of people for whom riding a bicycle to work or market is the standard form of transportation. Biking for Lent offers ample opportunity to pray for neighbors and the community along one’s commute.

A STEP FURTHER. Go a step further: donate the $50 you save on fuel during Lent to the Bishop’s Fund of the Free Methodist Church, designating it for “bicycles for India” in support of our effort to purchase 750 bikes for Christian outreach workers in India. $50 buys a rugged Atlas or Hero bicycle that will last a lifetime.

Photo: Three men ride along a Kolkata road. Bicycles and motorized bikes are more prevalent than autos in India.

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