By Christina Hermoso
The Council of the Laity of the Philippines (Sangguniang Laiko ng Pilipinas) expressed its sadness as it mourns the passing of former environment secretary Gina Lopez.
Dr. Marita Wasan, president of the lay group, dubbed Lopez as “Lady Laudato Si,” or the embodiment of Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment.
“Ms. Lopez is ‘Lady Laudato Si.’ In the biennial conference of the Sangguniang Laiko ng Pilipinas, Ms. Gina Lopez, as keynote speaker, flew to Albay to speak about love for the environment and how she wanted to help the islands develop economically. She is the personification of ‘Laudato Si,’preaching and acting upon the message of caring for our common home,” Wasan said over Church-run Radio Veritas.
‘Laudato Si’ in English means Praise Be to You.
Wasan said Lopez’ stand on environmental care and protection is unparalleled. “She was a very good example for environmentalists and for all government leaders. A true environmentalist and a shining example of selfless leadership, we, Catholics and all men of goodwill, mourn her passing, yet celebrate her legacy,” she said.
Caritas Manila, the social action arm of the Church, has likewise, expressed its sadness on the passing of the environmental advocate.
Lopez passed away on Monday, August 19, at the age of 65 due to multiple organ failure.