Taking time off his busy schedule on Aug 13, Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle spoke with CatholicNews on a number of topics regarding the Church.

Asked about his main concerns for the Church in Asia, the Archbishop of Manila said he was worried about the increasing gap between the rich and poor, the degradation of the environment and the growing number of young people leaving the Church.

“While the world continues to reinvent itself, growing wealthier and wealthier, the poor are being left behind. It makes me sad because the goods of the world are meant to be shared by all, not a few,” said Cardinal Tagle.

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle said he was worried about the number of young people leaving the Church.

On how the Church can help: “We will continue to teach and journey with the marginalised.”

Cardinal Tagle said that economic growth is being pursued without regard for the environment.

However, he shared that he was invited to the World Economic Forum East Asia in 2014 “and it was there I realised the business people also share a concern for the environment.”

He added that the Church must look to “work more strongly with business models for the sake of the environment.”

On young people leaving the Church, Cardinal Tagle urged various parishes to look to engage teens using more practical ways such as visits to the homes of the poor or serving in a care centre.

Cardinal Tagle was asked how social media could benefit the Church.

“In many ways, a lot of our priests aren’t very good at using the computer and keeping up with the various platforms,” he said.

“Learning a thing or two could help extend the reach of evangelisation,” he said.

This is where he felt young people could step in and play a significant role in the Church.

“Teach us. Teach the elderly what to do. In doing so, not only do the priests learn but the youths also may find a place with God,” he said.

When asked about people saying he could be the next pope, Cardinal Tagle laughed it off saying he “has much to learn and much to grow”.

He said it is mostly the secular media who like to create such stories.

“I don’t give it much thought,” he said.

By Jared Ng
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