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Philippine bishops to tackle green issues at plenary

Commitment to the environment among many Catholics is still wanting, conference secretary-general says

ucanews.com reporter, Manila

ucanews.com reporter, Manila

Published: July 05, 2019 02:56 AM GMT

Updated: July 05, 2019 02:58 AM GMT

Philippine bishops to tackle green issues at plenary

The Philippines Catholic bishops will be holding its bi-annual plenary assembly starting on July 6. (File photo by Mark Saludes)

Philippine Catholic bishops will be discussing issues relating to taking care of the environment during their bi-annual meeting this weekend.

"The environment is a big issue that's why we need to also look at it," said Father Marvin Mejia, secretary-general of the bishops' conference.

Columban priest John Leydon, co-convener of the Global Catholic Climate Movement, will address the bishops at this upcoming meeting.

The priest has earlier noted that commitment to the environment by many Catholics in the Philippines is wanting.

He said church-run businesses still invest in mining, coal, and other dirty energy projects despite several church institutions having already sold their stocks and invested in renewable energy.

In the northern Philippines, Catholics in Baguio Diocese were urged to bring plants and seedlings when attending the wake of the late Bishop Carlito Cenzon.

A circular issued by Bishop Victor Bendico of Baguio said the initiative is in response to Bishop Cenzon's active role in the care for the earth.

"He initiated the 'Tree of Life Program' in the diocese to propagate bamboo for the protection of the environment," said Bishop Bendico.

Bishop Cenzon, retired prelate of Baguio, died at the age of 80 in a Manila hospital on June 26.

The late prelate is most remembered for fighting to protect a forest reserve near the city from an illegal road project allegedly spearheaded by a former government official.
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Bishop Bendico also recalled that the late bishop led an initiative to raise funds to reinstate the city's children's playground and fence off the city's main park for its protection and preservation.

Aside from environmental issues, the Catholic bishops will also discuss their recent "Ad Limina" visit to the Vatican and issues raised during the trip.

Father Mejia said the church leaders will also be discussing preparations for the 500th anniversary of the arrival of Christianity in the Philippines in 2021.

"Starting this year, the preparation is more on catechetical formation," said the priest. "Other activities will be finalized during the plenary," he added.

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