Laudato Si’-inspired confab set

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QUEZON City, Nov. 10, 2015 – All young Filipinos, especially those in Metro Manila, are invited to a free Laudato Si’-inspired conference on Nov. 14, Saturday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at St. Pauls College Quezon City where they can take part in discussions and learn more about climate change and its impacts.

“In his encyclical, Pope Francis has issued a wide call for everyone to be mindful of the rate which we are currently exploiting and consuming the world’s natural resources: a rate that is not healthy and sustainable and greatly disadvantages poor and vulnerable groups and regions,” explained Fr. Dexter Toledo, OFM, national coordinator of Ecological Justice Interfaith Movement (EcoJIM), in a recent statement.

According to him, Laudato Si’ (Praise Be) serves as a concrete manifestation of the urgency and seriousness of the ecological and climate crisis and that will greatly benefit those who wish to take on the challenge of acting against climate change.

Inter-generational responsibility

Dubbed “Youth Congress for the Integrity of Creation and Climate Justice,” the one-day event carries the theme “Advancing Inter-generational Responsibility and Youth Leadership in Climate Justice.”

Toledo pointed out that inviting the youth to the conference comes with the recognition of their potential that needs to be tapped for the greater good.

“As the youth becomes more exposed and equipped to addressing climate change and caring for the environment, they will undoubtedly carry this with them as they grow and leave their own schools and communities,” the priest added.

Meanwhile, Bro. Angelito A. Cortez, another Franciscan, has underlined the need to empower the next generation of climate justice advocates.

Continuing campaign

In an interview, he told CBCP News it is in the interest of the coming generations that the campaign for the environment continues.

“The fight against climate change is not a battle that will be resolved in the next couple of years but a fight that must go on until succeeding decades, which makes it imperative to ensure that the youth of today are informed, established, and prepared to defend our common home,” said Cortez, noting that young people are the most at risk to the impacts and threats of climate change.

Expected speakers and their talks are as follows:

• “Why Are We Here,” Inter-generational Responsibility
Fr. Edwin A. Gariguez, executive secretary, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP)’s National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA)

• National situationer
Aaron Pedrosa, national secretary-general, Sanlakas

• “What Is Climate Justice?”
Gerry Arances, national coordinator, Philippine Movement for Climate Justice (PMCJ)

• “Laudato Si’”
Fr. John Leydon of Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) with Fr. Dexter Toledo

• “Climate Change Impacts on the Youth”
Elsie Delfin, research and communication officer, PMCJ

• “The Emerging Global Movement for Climate Justice”
Lidy Nacpil, coordinator, Asian Peoples’ Movement on Debt and Development

For inquiries, interested parties may contact (0917) 775-9343 or email ecojim.sect@gmail.com. (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)

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