07/17/2019, 14.15
PHILIPPINES
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Filipino bishops, acting against cimate change a "moral imperative"

In a pastoral letter the prelates raised the alarm about the archipelago's environmental future.  Condemning the "continuous destruction of our common home", they call for an "ecological conversion" in a context of "climate emergency".  Among the challenges is the renunciation of coal and intensive mining.

 

 

 Manila (AsiaNews / CBCP) - In a pastoral letter, the Filipino bishops raise the alarm about the archipelago's environmental future, condemning what they call "the continuing destruction of our common home".  The document, published yesterday by the Bishops' Conference of the Filipino bishops (Cbcp), calls for an "ecological conversion" in a widespread context of "climate emergency".

The nine-page letter is divided into eight sections.  The first half is dedicated to a reflection on the state of the environment, followed by ecological guidelines to deal with the emergency.  Setting out on the path traced by Pope Francis in the encyclical Laudato sì, the Filipino prelates stress that the cries of the land is as urgent as that of the poor for social justice.

Our predilection for the poor, the bishops write, "pushes us to give priority to those most affected, the" poorest of the poor, "who call on God to obtain justice".  And it is "our moral duty to respond to these sufferings" reads the document published on the Cbcp website.

"Given the high poverty rate in the Philippines - the text continues - the need to manage the environment is fundamental.  Poverty and environmental degradation feed each other ".

 The pontiff in the encyclical letter strongly emphasizes that climate change is a threat to the world's poor.  The bishops take up the Pope's words and stress the many challenges facing the country: among these are mining excavations and irresponsible mining activities, the construction of dams, the growing dependence on fossil energy production, primarily coal.

 Several studies confirm that the Philippines is one of the most vulnerable countries in terms of climate change.  We must act, the bishops say, also on behalf of those who "have no voice" and "for the planet" itself. 

Yesterday's is the eighth document of the Filipino prelates dedicated to ecology;  the first dates back to 1988 and is entitled "What is happening to our beautiful land".

Published shortly after the conclusion of the plenary assembly in Manila, the letter from the Filipino prelates urges not to use the money of the Church or Catholic institutions for the development of coal plants or to support mining companies.  Indeed, they continue, the invitation is to "discourage" the use of resources in these sectors and to live according to the dictates traced by Francis within Laudato sì.

Finally, the bishops announce the creation of an "ecological section" in every diocesan center, which focuses on the themes of nature and the environment.  "We have the moral imperative - they conclude - to act together decisively, to save our common home.  This is our duty as Christians, this is our responsibility. "

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