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Young Filipinos join global effort to fight nature's woes

Philippine chapter of Laudato Si' Generation youth movement launched as part of international battle against climate change

ucanews.com reporter, Manila

ucanews.com reporter, Manila

Updated: September 02, 2019 05:29 AM GMT
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Young Filipinos join global effort to fight nature's woes

Young Filipino Catholics launch "Laudato Si' Generation," a global youth movement that works to address the impact of climate change, in Manila on June 22. (Photo by Mark Saludes)

Hundreds of young Filipinos have declared their intention to join a global movement that aims to call attention to environmental problems around the world.

On June 22, church leaders in Manila launched the local counterpart of the "Laudato Si' Generation," a global youth movement that works to address the impact of climate change.

Launched during World Youth Day celebrations in Panama in January, the global youth movement has called on church and political leaders to take climate change seriously.

Father Edwin Gariguez, executive secretary of the social action arm of the Philippine Catholic bishops’ conference, said the young "have the power to change the fate of the world."

The priest said the movement is a response to a growing global campaign to engage young people in the protection of the "Common Home."

Columban priest John Leydon of the Global Catholic Climate Movement said the establishment of the youth initiative in the Philippines is "very significant" because the country is vulnerable to the impact of harsh weather conditions.

Father Leydon said people also listen to the youth because they look "into the future."

Archbishop Rolando Tirona of Caceres, national director of Caritas Philippines, called on the youth "to protect the environment by building relationships."

"We have to understand our relationship with nature, with our neighbors and with God who gave the world to us as a gift," the prelate told the gathering.

"Tell the world that we have to protect our Common Home," added Archbishop Tirona.

 Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila earlier called on young Filipinos to join the movement and be oriented with the need to care for the environment.

"Let us take care of our environment and the world we live in which will be inherited by the future generation," he said.

On Sept. 20, the global Catholic youth movement is set to stage an international "climate strike" to call for "radical decisions to reverse global warming."

Laudato Si' Generation already has thousands of members worldwide, primarily aged between 15 to 30 years old.

The movement holds regular webinars and members can join working groups focused on outreach, spirituality, communication and activism.

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