A Catholic bishop in the central Philippines called on the faithful to learn from the lessons of resiliency that Filipinos demonstrated at the height of super typhoon “Yolanda (Haiyan)” eight years ago.
In a message during the anniversary of the typhoon’s landfall on November 8, Bishop Crispin Varquez of Borongan said the commemoration should inspire everyone as they grapple with the health crisis.
“Let the lessons of resiliency, hope and solidarity carry us through in these challenging times,” said the prelate in a report on CBCP News.
He noted that many calamities in recent years are related to climate change, so he asked everyone “to hear the cry of our planet for common action to save our common home.”
Bishop Varquez called on the faithful to heed Pope Francis’ call for “ecological conversion.”
“We must move away from the sins of environmental abuse and neglect to show that we are truly returning to the Lord and we truly care for one another,” he said.
“Yolanda” left more than 6,000 people dead, thousands more missing, and at least five million people displaced after it struck the central Philippines on Nov. 8, 2013.
The prelate asked the faithful to be thankful to the Lord “that we have risen from the horrible destruction” that the typhoon had brought.
“We have seen God’s saving acts at work in our own history,” he said.
“We thank individuals, groups, and organizations who helped us rise and recover, and never forget them in our prayers.”
He also urged the faithful to pray for the people who died from the typhoon and from deliverance from all calamities.