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St. Luke's students create 'bag monster'

Third-graders raise environmental awareness

The sun shone through the stained-glass windows; singing and morning readings from the Bible could be heard. It was a normal day in morning chapel at St. Luke's Episcopal School until a costumed character made his way down the middle aisle.

"Hello, everybody!" the character yelled.

Just like that a "bag monster" was born.

Inside the suit was St. Luke's Episcopal Head of School Tom McLaughlin.

His suit was designed by third-graders, and adorned with 500 plastic shopping bags, equal to the number of bags an average family uses every year.

"It's clear all of us could do a better job in cutting down on our use of plastic bags," said McLaughlin, from inside the costume.

As the San Antonio City Council thinks about a ban on plastic shopping bags, some third-graders put together the "bag monster," not so much to weigh in on whether the city should ban these bags, but more to show the bags' environmental impact.

"We are trying to help our students recognize the importance of their leadership as they grow up, and one of the ways in which we are encouraging them to lead is caring for all of God's creation, for our environment," said McLaughlin.

The kids don't have to go far to see the impact plastic bags have on the environment. A creek runs right below the St. Luke's campus and when it floods, the surrounding trees are full of bags.

Along with the bag monster, third-graders also made message boards. St. Luke's even has their own reusable bags, sending a message with the help of the creature from the "bag lagoon."

"I hope these students will encourage their families, their neighbors and friends to really limit the use of plastic bags," said McLaughlin.


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