Catholic parishes and assistance centers are ready to help victims of storms and major floods in the Manila area, said Cardinal Luis Tagle of Manila over the weekend.
“To our brothers and sisters affected by the flooding, just go to your parishes and social action centers if you are in need of help,” the cardinal told Radio Veritas Aug. 12. “Those who want to send their help in any way they can, they can contact our parishes and social action centers and they will be willing to accept them.”
The cardinal has asked for prayers for those affected by recent flooding, while also warning against the dangers of environmental destruction.
“Part of our call is for everyone not to add to what could destroy our environment,” he said.
The southeast monsoon, drawing more force from a tropical storm, brought rains and floods to the Manila area over the weekend. Floodwaters exceeded six feet in depth.
The storms have affected more than 1.1 million people. At least three people were killed and about 60,000 people were displaced from their homes and took refuge in evacuation centers, CBCP News reports.
More flooding is expected in the next few days.
Cleanup has begun in Manila, including efforts to remove the debris and garbage that the floods left on roads and streets.
The cardinal linked the piles of garbage to human action.
“Often times, we are the first ones who are affected by the damages we have caused our common home,” he said. “So this may serve as a reiteration of our call for us not to add anymore to the destruction of our planet.”
He encouraged Filipinos to “forget about our culture of just throwing around anything and everything.”
“Let us stop being disrespectful and indifferent of our common home,” he said.
Fr. Edwin Gariguez, executive secretary of Caritas Philippines, said Caritas affiliates in Manila, Antipolo and Pasig provided food relief to at least 1,500 families since Saturday.