Seminarians of St. John Vianney Theological Seminary (SJVTS) are assigned with an unusual task for their vacation this month: to go home and bring with them a number of tree seedlings.
According to Fr. Reynaldo Raluto, Academic Dean at the SJVTS, the seedlings will be planted in each of the seminarians’ homes in Mindanao, Bohol, and Maasin, and is part of the seminary’s “500 Trees for the 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines” initiative. (Read: Vatican Applauds ‘Diocese of Maasin’ for Renewable Energy Efforts)
“This is the aim of SJVTS to mark this important year in the history of the Philippine Church,” Raluto said.
Vianney Jubilee Trees
The SJVTS launched the tree-planting initiative on May 12. Archbishop Jose Cabantan of Cagayan de Oro, his predecessor Archbishop Emeritus Antonio Ledesma, Malaybalay Diocesan Administrator Msgr. Noel Pedregosa, and Bishops Antonieto Cabajog of Surigao, Cosme Damian Almedilla of Butuan, and Raul Dael of Tandag planted the first six of the 500 new trees.
The remaining 494 trees, called jubilee trees, will be planted in their seminarians’ homes. “They will bring home from the seminary seedlings properly marked as ‘Vianney Jubilee Trees’ and plant them in their home or parish lots,” Raluto said.
“Each of the seedlings the seminarians will plant will be counted as part of the 500 jubilee trees,” he added. (Read: Homonhon Residents Plant Trees to Mark 500 Years of PH Christianity)
“500 Trees for the 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines” is just one of SJVTS’s many initiatives for promoting care for the environment. (Read: Ana Patricia Non Shares Insights About Starting a Community Pantry)
Last month, the seminary launched its green version of the community pantry initiative, called “community pan-tree,” as their expression of support for charity projects and Pope Francis’s encyclical, Laudato si’: On Care for Our Common Home.
This week, May 16 to 25, Catholic Churches around the world are celebrating the Laudato si’ week. Numerous environmental initiatives are expected to be held within these days.