Staff from the Philippine Bible Society make a point of regularly leaving their desks and getting out into the community to interact with people directly. But one recent community initiative was a completely new experience.
Back in May, President Aquino responded to concerns about deforestation in the Philippines with the launch of the National Greening Program, which aims to plant 1.5 billion trees in the period to 2016. A perfect match with the theme selected by the Bible Society for this year’s Bible Week: Becoming One Nation in the Stewardship of Creation!
Keen to show a practical and biblical response to the National Greening Program, 50 staff from the Bible Society set off on July 16 for the mountains around the small community of Cayabu. Here a representative of the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources demonstrated how to plant seedlings. Then it was their turn. Working together, the staff planted a total of 200 seedlings, a small but valuable contribution to improving the local environment.
‘So happy for these gifts’
Caring for God’s human creation was also on the agenda. After planting the seedlings, the visitors walked to Cayabu and spent time talking to its residents. They also distributed Portions and Selections on the subject of calamity. The joy expressed by Melania, an elder of the community who is in her 50s, was shared by everybody.
“I’m so happy for these gifts,” she said. “It will be really exciting to take them home. I can’t read, but I look forward to my children reading them to me.”