Keep Undas ‘prayerful not wasteful,’ bishop, Ecowaste urge

By: - Reporter / @KAguilarINQ
/ 08:27 AM October 29, 2019

A man walks past a pile of garbage at the Manila South Cemetery on November 2, 2018. (Daphne Galvez / INQUIRER.net)

MANILA, Philippines — The public should keep Undas “prayerful” instead of “wasteful,” Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) Vice President and Caloocan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David and green group EcoWaste Coalition urged Tuesday.

In a joint appeal, David and EcoWaste called on Filipinos to “break away” from littering as they visit their loved ones in cemeteries.


“The time-honored practice of remembering our deceased loved ones and the Saints has turned into a de facto feast of litterbugs as cemetery guests leave tons of trash on what is supposed to be a sacred ground,” David said in a statement.

“Let us break away from littering and other disrespectful acts and celebrate Undas as a prayerful instead of a wasteful occasion.  Cemeteries are a hallowed ground, not a dumping ground for leftovers and disposables,” he stressed.


EcoWaste’s Zero Waste Campaigner Jove Benosa advised the public to avoid single-use plastics and other disposables to prevent garbage in cemeteries.

“The most effective way of preventing Undas garbage overload is by avoiding the generation of trash in the first place. This will require the conscious decision by families and individuals to consume responsibly, avoid single-use plastics and other disposables and not leave piles of rubbish in the cemeteries,” Benosa said as quoted in the same statement.

EcoWaste came up with reminders to guide cemetery visitors toward a zero-waste Undas:

1.  Don’t litter, dump or burn trash in the cemetery.

2.  Choose lead-safe paints for repainting tombs.

3.  Offer local fresh flowers, not plastic ones, and refrain from wrapping them in plastic.

4.  Pick clean-burning candles, and shun those with poisonous lead-cored wicks.


5.  Avoid making noise or playing loud music in the cemetery.

6.  Pack meals and drinks  in reusable containers.

7. Bring just enough food to avoid spoilage or wastage.

8.  Avoid single-use plastics and go for reusable bags, food and beverage containers, and cutlery.

9.  Don’t smoke or vape in the cemetery.

10.  Bring all discards home, including leftovers, and do not leave any trash behind.

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TAGS: EcoWaste Coalition, Garbage, undas, Waste
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