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A gentle soul, a great loss

05:00 AM August 23, 2019

I had no personal encounter with Gina Lopez, but somehow, I feel like a part of me was broken when I heard about her death.

We lost such a beautiful and gentle soul who was also a ferocious warrior fighting for our Mother Earth.

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What struck me most about this woman was her humility. Although born to a wealthy family, she gave up a luxurious life and lived in poverty as a yoga missionary. For her to experience extreme poverty is a testament to her pure spirituality. For two years, she lived in a slum area in Kenya and
had to queue for water every single day. Who among us could even contemplate doing that, of giving up a comfortable life in exchange for this incredible challenge?

The Philippines lost a Filipino worthy to be a public servant. When she was refused confirmation as secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, we lost a leader who could have really made a change. Shame to those members of the Commission on Appointments for rejecting her.

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As in the case of the late senators Miriam Defensor Santiago and Raul Roco, the death of Gina Lopez is a great loss to all Filipinos, especially the children, the poor and those who love nature.

RADO GATCHALIAN,
Sydney, Australia

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TAGS: Department of Environment and Natural Resources, environment warrior, Gina Lopez
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