Philippines. On 2 October 2022, more than 1,000 adolescents and young people took part in an online ecological dialogue, organized by the Laura Vicuña Foundation (LVF) of the St. Mary D. Mazzarello Province (FIL), on the theme “Expectations vs Reality – Listening to the voice of creation”, on the occasion of Season of Creation, annual ecumenical time of prayer and action for the Common Home, from 1 September to 4 October 2022.
The online meeting was prepared by two young animators of the Laura Vicuña Center in Cubao, coordinated by Sr. Analyn Guerrero, FMA, who met with the young animators of the LVF communities for brainstorming, sharing environmental issues and insights on the different realities, to think together about strategies on how to effectively help LVF members to actively contribute with initiatives aimed at safeguarding creation.
Sr. Runita Borja, General Councilor for Youth Ministry of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, and Sr. Teresita Padron, Provincial of the FIL Province, spoke online, congratulating the young people for the realization of the event.
In her message, Sr. Runita stressed that we are interconnected “not with one another, but above all with creation, that the commitments made in this Ecological Dialogue should be transformed into concrete actions that could give life to a chain of simple virtuous ways to take care of our common home, the earth.” Above all, she emphasized “the primacy of love, to do everything in love and with love, as Jesus made Himself one of us in His incarnation.”
It was an interactive dialogue between the LVF Communities and the local realities of intervention in the prevention and protection of children, where each participant shared what they learned and decided to implement on the theme of “Listening to the voice of creation.”
In particular, the topic of the “Carbon footprint” was examined. It corresponds to the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere by human activities. To make participants aware of their contribution to global warming, they were subjected to a test, after which they made a commitment to take concrete steps to reduce the carbon footprint in their homes. Children, young people, and parents are committed to proper waste disposal and to save on water and electricity consumption, to name a few.
The Ecological Dialogue has shown that the solutions to climate change are in everyone’s hands, as Pope Francis said, “no one is so poor that they cannot give what they have, but above all, what they are” (Twitter @pontiflex, June 14 2018). In one of her interventions, Sr. Maria Victoria Santa Ana, FMA, Managing Director of the Foundation, said, “We might think that in our simple and ordinary condition, our contribution is insignificant, but with the emergency the earth is in now, our coming together and diligent efforts to reduce our carbon footprint have an impact that can change our common home. Together we can make a difference!”.