Written by Prince Henderson, ECM Communications Officer

Rev. Fr. Dr Kazingatchire showing the Seminarians at ICS  an Encyclical bookParticipantsThe Social Directorate of the Episcopal Conference of Malawi (ECM) has embarked on a dissemination exercise of the Pope’s “Laudato Si” Encyclical which was initially launched by Malawi Catholic Bishops late last year to institutions of higher learning within the Catholic Church as a way of articulating the message of Pope Francis in the Encyclical.

The Director responsible for the Directorate, Carsterns Mulume said the aim of reaching out to students including Seminarians in Catholic Schools of higher learning is to ensure that the objective of the Pope’s Encyclical which is centered on the “care for our common home” is achieved.

“As the Social Directorate of the Church, we thought of not just staying idle having launched the Pope’s Encyclical in Lilongwe last year. We in the Directorate which is comprised of Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace, Catholic Development Commission in Malawi, Education, Social Communications and Heath decided of reaching you students with the message that the Holy Father wanted us to understand and put into practice,” said Mulume at InterCongretation Seminary (ICS) in the Eastern district of Balaka.

Mulume said a similar dissemination exercise has already taken place at Catholic University of Malawi (CUMA) and ICS was the second school to be reached hence other schools of higher learning like St. Peters and Kachebere Major Seminaries will also be reached respectively.

“Already our meetings with students have already bearing fruits. For instance, CUMA having been reached with the Encyclical message embarked on a tree planting exercise as a way of responding to Pope’s call to care for our common home which includes care for the environment,” he said.

On another note, Mulume commended the Lilongwe Agriculture And Natural Resources (LUANAR), Bunda College Campus of the University of Malawi for taking their own initiative to launch the Pope’s Encyclical.

Presenting his paper to the students at ICS titled Climate Change and Development in Malawi: The Role of the Church David Mkwambisi, Associate Professor; Environmental Sustainability at LUANAR, Bunda Campus effects of climate change have greatly impacted on Malawi’s environment hence the need for pro-activeness to overcome the challenge by among others adopting the Pope’s Encyclical call.

“Such impacts and effects ranges from decrease in natural resources, poor water quality, low crop yield, siltation of rivers, human health, environmental refugees, infrastructure destruction and land degradation,” he said.

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