09/05/2015, 00.00
PHILIPPINES
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Care for creation, Filipino Catholics promote organic farming

In response to the invitation of Pope Francis and the day that he instituted, in Davao farmers launch a method of natural cultivation free of pesticides. Healthy and environmentally friendly food production. A parish plants 100 trees against deforestation and for the prevention of natural disasters.

Manila (AsiaNews / CBCP) - In response to the exhortation of Pope Francis, who is calling for a greater care of creation and attention to the environment and creation, Filipino Catholics in the region of Davao recently relaunched a program of organic farming. Coinciding with the first World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, they planted trees in an area to be redeveloped.

Orthodox, Anglican and Reformed Church representatives, cardinals, bishops, members of the diplomatic corps and thousands of faithful participated in the liturgy of the word proposed by Pope Francis for the "World Day", organized a few weeks ago in communion with the Orthodox Church.

Inspired by the prayer, the Center for Social Action of the Archdiocese of Davao (ASAC) has promoted a series of training courses for lay people, experts and enthusiasts, dedicated precisely to the issues and the benefits of organic farming. Sister Marissa Arado, Asac coordinator, highlights the contribution of different organizations and bodies with expertise in the field of organic and sustainable agriculture with the aim of spreading knowledge.

Unlike the extensively used industrial methods in agriculture which include chemical additives and pesticides,  the nun points out that organic farming, "does not cause harm to the environment and to human beings." Our goal, she adds, is to transform organic farming "into a way of life, because we have a kind of food production that does not damage people’s health and does not pollute the environment."

This initiative continues Sister Marissa, "it is our way of being shepherds in the context of God's creation, because it is part of our calling to take care of the environment." In this month of September programs raising awareness and giving insight into the topic will cover the area of ​​Wagan, a district of Davao City.

Continuing the theme of environmental protection, the parish of Holy Rosary Malita (Western Davao) has recently promoted the planting of 100 trees. Although surrounded by forests, the area in the past has been the subject of wild development and the indiscriminate felling of trees and plants. "Planting trees - says the pastor Fr. Kim Cossid - is the best way to mitigate the effects of climate change and prevent disasters caused by floods and landslides".

The Filipino Church’s interest in environmental issues is not surprising, because in the past the Catholic leaders have paid much attention to the issue. In February last year the parishes of the capital launched an awareness campaign for the collection and disposal of electronic waste. In Luzon Catholics and NGOs they have promoted a common struggle for the rehabilitation of contaminated soil. Last March, the bishops welcomed the decision to transfer the mega-oil facility in the heart of the capital, Manila.

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