After many months of implementing and monitoring the green and eco-friendly activities of the parish of the Church of Divine Mercy (CDM) was rewarded by winning two awards for the church by the Penang State Government and by the Water Authority of Penang (PBA). The award ceremony was held on the 21st November at a local hotel and the parish priest of CDM, Fr Martin Arlando proudly received the “Green Office”award from the Chief Minister of Penang, YB Chow Kon Yeow and the “Aqua Save”award from the PBA Holdings Bhd CEO Dato Ir Jaseni Maidinsa.
With the Green Certification from Penang Green Council (non-profit government organization), CDM is designated as an Eco Parish. This is responding to Pope Francis’ Laudato Si’ call to care for creation and is in line with the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM). Fr Martin remarked that the Go Green initiative is everyone’s responsibility at CDM, therefore all the ministries of CDM is responsible for this success. He added that he was especially proud of the Green award as it is the first to be given to a religious body in Malaysia. The Green Council had also expressed their intention to showcase CDM as the role model for this green initiative in the state. He attributed this success to the newly created Ministry of the Friends of Creation (FoC) headed by Magdalene Chiang Khai Lin. In the short space of eight months, this ministry had proved to be able to change the mindset of the parishioners towards being more aware and caring towards the environment. The various projects that have been initiated at the parish included the setting up of a recycling center, enzyme making, establishing an Eco Cafe, promoting greater consciousness of the greenery of church compounds, gotong royong to maintain the cleanliness and maintenance of the church, and composting of waste materials from the church kitchen. Currently maintained include the DIY rain harvesting system, the vertical gardens and the use of solar power to harness the energy from the sun for the use of the premises.
In order to sustain the interest in caring for the environment, the slide below is projected before each of the weekend mass services as a reminder to the parishioners. Announcements of various up-coming events are also announced periodically and posted on the CDM website.
Magdalene Chiang Khai Lin
26th November, 2019