Malawi: Parish Holy Childhood programme leads children into planting 10 000 trees.
Sam Kalimba – Dedza, Malawi.
The Diocese of Dedza’s Pontifical Mission Society (PMS) through its tree planting activity of the Holy Childhood project with support from Holy Childhood Society of Slovakia (Missio Slovakia) planted over 10,000 trees on 7th January around Tsangano Parish.
Teaching children to love nature
PMS Director in the Diocese Fr. Peter Madeya says the Diocese of Dedza through PMS are implementing the project of planting trees in the Diocese so that children will grow with love for nature.
Amplifying Pope Francis' call
“We are amplifying the call by Pope Francis in his encyclical of May 2015, Laudato Si by putting it in the lives of those that define the future Church, the children. We believe that if we implement together with children the concept of planting and nurturing trees, they will remain focused in praising the Lord God through their acts of caring nature,” said Madeya
Fr. Madeya explained that the tree planting exercise took place on the eve of this year’s Epiphany Sunday to let children realise that God reveals Himself through the natural environment and that whenever they are planning for liturgical activities, they should mainstream the activities of taking care of the environment.
Tsangano Parish in the Diocese engaged Holy childhood animators to guide the children in carrying out the activity.
90% tree survival rate
“Two hundred and thirty-five children participated in the exercise from three different locations of Tsangano Parish. We have a woodlot of 4,000 trees that we planted last year at Bayani church where 47 children this year were led to take care of them. We registered a positive tree survival rate of about 90% at Bayani. At Muuso Church, 78 children were assisted to plant 3000 trees and at Tsangano Church 110 children were helped to plant 8000 trees,” said Fr. Madeya.
He said that the trees have since been handed over to church council’s which will be using small Christian communities and members from different church groups through Holy childhood to nurture the woodlots.
“Apart from the council structures we will hire three attendants per centre who will be guarding the trees against domestic animals and people from encroachment,” he said.
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