As we head into the week of Thanksgiving, with lots of food and travel, immediately followed by a black Friday shopping frenzy, a columnist poses the question, “What would Jesus buy?”
There are a couple of groups out there that advocate against consumerism. While I’m no longer the shopper that I was, and have pared down my gift list considerably, I can’t imagine that many people will be able to avoid the big box stores or will think to shop locally.
In my area, “locally” could arguably include several big box retailers headquartered here. And a lot of people rely on incomes derived from working either at HQ or in retail stores. In fact, one of my friends just completed several months as a temp at one of the HQ’s. She loved it and hopes to become an employee.
Since I want a new electronic item, I’m likely to shop at a big box store. Soon, because after Thanksgiving, I’m not likely to want to venture to them.
There are a lot of great local stores though, in particular a couple of gift shops; I won’t say they’re chains, but each has several locations. I have no information on the religious or political stance of the owners but do know that if I’m at a loss for what to buy, either of these places will have something fun, appropriate and not seen everywhere. I sometimes go window shopping when I don’t need a gift, just to see what’s new.
One place to shop locally, for icons, is at the Carmelite Monastery. Another, for books on theology, saints and other religious topics, is Loome’s. There are also several religious goods stores in the area, some of which have more than one location.
Our local Little Sisters of the Poor have a holiday boutique with crafts, gift baskets and baked goods. You can also support your parish by supporting its gift shop. Or gift case.
I don’t know what Jesus would buy, but I doubt he’d go into a shopping frenzy.