Helping nature rejuvenate

Sixty participants, from a cross-section of Malaysian society, were spiritually activated to help nature rejuvenate on June 22.

Jul 12, 2019

By Dr Frances Lee (PhD)
Sixty participants, from a cross-section of Malaysian society, were spiritually activated to help nature rejuvenate on June 22. Easily identifiable were the MAJODI Living Laudato Si (MLLS) team dressed in their apple green t-shirts. This was their first cooperative effort with environmental advocates.

A total of 300 mangrove saplings were planted. MLLS leader, Dr Maria Lee (Medical) led the way.

Everyone was shocked by the ocean waste washed ashore. After the planting, they picked up the rubbish and cleared the mangrove shoreline of waste. It was a spontaneous response of the MLLS team. Ten bags of waste were collected.

After changing into dry clothes, a ranger led the participants to explore the mangrove swamp.They did not see many birds but there were many different types of shellfish. Not seen was the ular bakau that has the same colour as the mangroves. It was noticeable that lots of the mangroves had disappeared along the shoreline. It will take years to replant. Dr Maria indicated that the MLLS team will join the effort of replanting the Tanjung Piai Mangrove Forest (TPMF) with the National Parks of Malaysia. Now, why is TPMF important? Why is the mangrove forest vital to life on earth? Why should the Church be involved, especially the local church community? Sustaining the life and growth of the Lord’s creation seems obvious.

Environment advocates work on forest conservation. As for the Church, protecting and growing the natural environment is our God given stewardship of the earth.

The MLLS team comprised members from the Church of Immaculate Conception (CIC), Sacred Heart Catheral and Church of St Joseph. This was their first experience going beyond parish level into the secular world of creation.

For MLLS, the experience was more than replanting the mangrove forest. They saw that many others have assumed their responsibility as good stewards of creation. The most refreshing experience was to hear the children asking their parents many questions, “What are you planting? How does a tree, a mangrove, a plant give oxygen? How long does a sapling take to grow into a tree? How many trees will grow into a forest? Why must the seashore be filled with mangroves? Why do crabs, prawns, clams, etc. live in the mangrove forest? Why do birds come here?”

MLLS, especially CIC, has begun by being the good stewards of the Lord’s bounty. MAJODI’s edible garden in MAJODI is progressing along under the stewardship of Dr Maria.

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