Reflections - Lonnie Whittington

During the First and Second World Wars people in America grew their own food in what were referred to as "Victory Gardens." These gardens were encouraged so that pressure on the public food supply would be diminished and helped avoid rationing of some goods. An added benefit was that gardeners felt empowered by their contribution to the war effort. The Farmer's Markets of today provide a similar but more expanded service. The fresh produce grown within communities contributes at least three huge benefits.

Support of local farmers. This is important because buying from local farmers allows them to continue their business and contributes to the local flow of commerce. Religious Science upholds the idea that each individual is connected spiritually and by supporting our local farmers we are supporting those who live in our community.

Higher quality of food. This is extremely important since processed foods are a major factor in creating negative health issues. Farmer's markets feature food that is grown naturally and organically, retaining more flavor and providing more nutrition than some corporately-grown fruits and vegetables. Natural foods are sometimes sprayed with chemicals that regulate the plant's growth and have been known to cause cancer. Religious Science believes in the inherent quality of food that is not altered by artificial means.

Supports the environment. The benefits include maintaining a natural habitat for local wildlife rather than for development. Fewer fossil fuels are needed to transport the food to market since they travel over less distance. And, studies indicate that the network of farmers help conserve water and maintain the quality of the soil. Religious Science upholds the idea that humans are responsible stewards of our planet, including all of the animals living on it.