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Catholics urged to join Earth Hour

Catholics urged to join Earth Hour

MANILA– The Catholic bishops encouraged the faithful to switch their lights out for this year’s Earth Hour, reminding them to help protect the planet.

The bishops urged Catholics to join millions of people across the world who will show they care about the future with global lights out on Saturday, March 25, for an at least an hour starting at 8:30pm.

“We your bishops ask all Catholics in the Philippines — and wherever they may be — to join in observance of earth hour,” said Archbishop Socrates Villegas, president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

“This way, we will also be reminding ourselves of how needlessly wasteful we can be — of electric energy, water, and other resources that we thoughtlessly believe we have in abundance but of which we are, increasingly, in short supply,” he said.

Villegas said the people need to act together to protect the planet from the impacts of climate change.

“For too long now, we have dealt with earth as a treasure-trove to be plundered at will, exploited to the hilt. We have been sufficiently warned: There is only so much abuse the environment can take before it pays us back in full,” he said.

Organized by the World Wildlife Fund, the yearly event is marked by governments, citizens, and environment activists who turn off the electricity for an hour.

Now on it’s 10th year, the campaign seeks to remind people of the need to cut the use of fossil fuels and protect the earth.

The archbishop also said joining the Earth Hour is a way for the people to supplement the efforts of the government to combat climate change.

“Government’s commitment is not enough. It takes a renewal not only of our commitment to care for the earth, but of our faith, to be able to recognize the world we live in as God’s gift, our common heritage as his sons and daughters,” he added.

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, for his part, called on his flock to take the opportunity when they turn off non-essential light to offer prayers.

“We are being called to bring the rosary and pray in that one hour, where we allow Mother Earth to conserve energy and get some rest,” Tagle said.  CBCPNews