Bishop calls to protect Bohol’s ‘natural wonders’

March 15, 2024 - 10:56 AM
File photo of the Chocolate Hills in Bohol (P199 via Wikimedia)

A Catholic bishop in Bohol encouraged the faithful to protect the province’s “unique gifts” following the controversy surrounding a resort built within the iconic Chocolate Hills.

Bishop Alberto Uy of Tagbilaran said it is important for Boholanos to “recognize and cherish” Bohol’s landmarks including its pristine beaches, centuries-old churches and “myriad of other natural wonders”.

“We should strive to appreciate and preserve these treasures that make our province truly special,” Uy said in a social media post on Thursday.

A video of the Captain’s Peak Resort, built within the protected zone of the Chocolate Hills, went viral online this week, drawing uproar from netizens.

The controversy prompted the environment department to dispatch a team to probe potential violations of last year’s temporary closure order on the facility.

Both Houses of Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives, are also seeking an inquiry into the construction of the resort.

The 57-year-old bishop called on the faithful to take “pro-active” steps in safeguarding the environment.

He said these may be done through conservation efforts, sustainable practices, or advocating for policies that prioritize environmental protection.

“Together, we can make a meaningful impact and ensure a harmonious coexistence with nature,” Uy said.

The National Geographic in 2016 listed the Chocolate Hills among 19 of the most wild and beautiful places in the world, describing it as “a mystery of nature.”

In 2023, Bohol was recognized as the Philippines’ first global geopark by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

READ: Why ‘Chocolate Hills’ is trending and what’s a resort got to do with it | Viral Bohol resort looks forward to welcoming people back after temporary closure