ASIA / PHILIPPINES – The Catholic Church celebrates the Time of Creation in the spirit of Laudato Sì

ASIA / PHILIPPINES – The Catholic Church celebrates the Time of Creation in the spirit of Laudato Sì

Haribort Foundation

Manila (Agenzia Fides) – The Catholic Church in the Philippines is living and celebrating the “Time of Creation” with full involvement. The Filipino bishops urged priests, nuns, laity, families, communities and Catholic movements to safeguard creation, gift of God, with respect for each creature, for the dignity of human life, for the environment. In a Pastoral Letter on the occasion of the “Time of Creation”, which the universal Church celebrates from September 1 to October 4, Mgr. Romulo G. Valles, Archbishop of Davao, outgoing President of the Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), said: “Our common home is on the brink of disaster. Urgent action is needed. We hope that this Time of Creation will lead us to renew our commitment to act to ensure that all creation has a healthy and safe home in which to flourish and participate in the renewal of the Oikos (house) of God ”.
“Be responsible stewards of creation,” Cardinal José Advincula, Archbishop of Manila, said at the opening celebration of the “Time of Creation” on September 1, calling all the faithful to “protect God’s creation not as a monopoly, but as a gift that must be shared with everyone “. “What we have received as a gift, we must give as a gift. Here the missionary dimension of our Creation Time comes into play,” Cardinal Advincula said, speaking in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, at Manila. And “God’s gifts cannot be used to the detriment or benefit of others. Jesus teaches us that gifts should not be monopolized by a few. Gifts should be shared and everyone should benefit,” a he added. “Let us join Pope Francis in his prayerful intention so that we all make courageous choices for a simple and ecologically sustainable way of life,” said the Cardinal. “And with the inspiration of Saint Francis of Assisi, we begin this Time of Creation with gratitude for the gifts we have received and with the firm determination to share and be responsible stewards of the gifts of God”, a- he added. From September 1 to October 4, feast of Saint Francis, all the Christian communities of the world celebrate the beauty and the goodness of creation. This worldwide celebration began in 1989 with the recognition of Creation Day by the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which is September 1, and is now adopted ecumenically. The Philippine Church has extended Creation Time for another week, until October 10, a Sunday dedicated to the country’s indigenous peoples. The bishops urge everyone to celebrate the second time of creation “with families, communities and parishes, in accordance with the encyclical Laudato Sì 2015 of Pope Francis on the concern of the common home.
Various activities were organized across the country to launch the “Laudato Sì Platform for Action”, a seven-year program to experience Laudato Sì. In the Pastoral Letter issued by the bishops of all the dioceses, the faithful are also invited to sign a petition inviting international institutions to do more for the protection of the planet and therefore of humanity. “Invite your families and friends to sign this petition for the next two major meetings on biodiversity and climate change,” said Mgr. Valleys. “The United Nations Conference on Biodiversity (COP 15) brings together nations from around the world to tackle the problem of biodiversity loss, but the United Nations Conference on Climate Change (COP26) addresses the urgency of climate crisis. These two issues, climate and biodiversity, are closely linked: climate change should become an increasingly important factor in the loss of biodiversity, ”explains the Letter. Quoting UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, the Philippine bishops say: “The world is dangerously close to irreversible global warming unequivocally caused by human activities. It is the context in which we are called to celebrate the Time of Creation, by renewing and respecting our A house which is on the brink “.
Already in 2003, through the Pastoral Declaration of the Permanent Council, “Celebrating the Creation Day and the Time of Creation”, the CBCP asked all local communities to observe and celebrate the “Time of Creation” . In 2015, Pope Francis officially added to the Catholic calendar the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation” as a day of prayer to be celebrated annually at a universal level. In 2016, the Pope officially invited all Catholics in the world to celebrate it in the “Time of Creation”, a special month to reflect, raise awareness and act. This year, the theme of the Time of Creation is “A house for all. Renew the Oikos of God ”. (SD-PA) (Agenzia Fides, 02/09/2021)


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