aring for the environment, our common home, through interfaith cooperation and practical action.

In Pakistanby

09Feb2018

Interfaith seminar

At St. Paul's High School Badin

Hydarabad

Care of Environment through Interfaith cooperation in St. Paul's High School Badin

Care of Environment through Interfaith cooperation in St. Paul's High School Badin

On Friday, February 9, 2018 over 75 senior year students of St. Paul’s High School, Badin gathered in the school hall for a seminar on caring for the environment, our common home, through interfaith cooperation and practical action. Danish Yakoob and Fr. Liam O’Callaghan of the Columban JPIC/IRD team were the resource persons. The students are from different religious backgrounds – Muslim, Hindu and Christian.

There was initially input on World Interfaith Harmony week (WIHW) which is a UN initiative and takes place every year on February 1-7. This was followed by an input on Interreligious Dialogue (IRD), learning about what it is and the attitudes needed to make it successful. There was reflection on the definition of IRD and its characteristics: - meeting of peoples of different religions, freedom and openness, listening, trying to understand the other, two-way not one-way, working together for the common good. Above all, the most basic reason for dialogue is our common humanity, we are all brothers and sisters. 

Discussion then moved to the situation of the environment and the crisis we are facing, especially in Pakistan, now the seventh most vulnerable country in the world to climate change. The effects of this is seen in increased occurrence of extreme weather events (e.g. heat waves, flooding), water scarcity, poor quality of drinking water, air pollution and lack of forest cover. A lively discussion ensued on what we can do to protect the environment; suggestions include: - not wasting water, using less electricity, planting trees and plants, using cloth bags instead of plastic ones, cleaning our neighbourhood, sharing this information with family and friends and to start with myself.

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