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By Ma. Ceres P. Doyo
I can bet my month’s earnings that most of the suspected, accused and guilty (the guilty know they are guilty even before they are proven guilty or innocent in court) in the blockbuster multibillion-peso plunder case under investigation are Catholic Christians by affiliation, or profess to be.
By Juan L. Mercado
A Manileño priest is among the Capuchin martyrs who will be beatified on Oct. 13. The Congregation for Causes of Saints prefect will represent Pope Francis at the rites in Spain. Fr. Eugenio Sanz-Orozco Mortera will be known as “Blessed Jose Maria de Manila,” the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines stated.
By Rina Jimenez-David
Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas, the incoming president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, has issued a pastoral letter on the currently “hot” issue of the misuse of the Priority Development Assistance Fund by certain legislators. The PDAF, for those who only tuned in now, consists of money provided for congresspersons and senators to [...]
By Artemio V. Panganiban
The election of Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas to the presidency of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines complements the renewal of the Catholic Church in our country that began with the elevation of Archbishop Luis Antonio G. Tagle to the College of Cardinals. Both are young, humble, prayerful and empowering.
This is in reaction to the Inquirer’s news article on the election of Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas as president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (“Bishop Soc heads CBCP,” Front Page, 7/8/13). From his statement regarding the Church’s role as “conscience troublemakers” we health workers see a glimmer of hope that gives us reason to count on the Church for guidance and help.
By Conrado de Quiros
Socrates Villegas is the new head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines. He marked the event by saying the Church would continue to pursue its role of critical collaboration with government.
A relevant question was raised by Inquirer columnist Winnie Monsod in her regular TV appearance at “Unang Hirit” (GMA7, 4/9/13). Commenting on the White Vote Movement, Monsod asked, “Why call it the Catholic vote?”
By Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas S. J.
The Celdran Case. Article 133 of the Revised Penal Code punishes “anyone who, in a place devoted to religious worship or during the celebration of any religious ceremony shall perform acts notoriously offensive to the feelings of the faithful.”
The election season is turning out to be an unprecedented showcase of dynastic hubris, with members of historically well-entrenched political families indicating their intent to seek important posts with hardly any or a minimum of qualifications and track record of public service, or any record, for that matter, of competence and vision.
It was discouraging to see the dialogue between the Casiguran marchers and President Aquino turn sour at the end. A prominent lawyer advising the protesters suggested that the acrimonious end may have been caused by their unrealistically high expectations; many commentators faulted the President for being too process-oriented. All this is unfortunate, because there is a real need to review the very basis of the ambitious Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Freeport Authority, or Apeco—and for the review to have actual impact, the protesters and the President need to work with each other.
By Ma. Ceres P. Doyo
When the 120 farmers and members of the indigenous groups Dumagat and Agta marched 340 kilometers for three weeks from Casiguran, Aurora, to Manila to amplify their opposition to the Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Freeport Authority (Apeco), they were not wearing headbands and carrying placards that said: “We are open to negotiations” or “We have open minds.” When you oppose, you do not say, “Let’s meet halfway,” and hope for crumbs. You give it your mighty all until the other side and the leaders-that-be sit down to talk and settle—reasonably and justly.
By Patricia Evangelista
On Aug. 31, 2012, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines published an advertisement in this newspaper arguing the CBCP’s stance against the Reproductive Health bill. Signed by the Most Reverend Gabriel V. Reyes, DD, Bishop of Antipolo, the “Defense of the Stand of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines on the House Bill 4244,” referred to an unnamed “columnist in one of our newspapers” who wrote that “the state should not prevent people from practicing responsible parenthood according to their beliefs nor may churchmen compel President Aquino, by whatever means, to prevent people from acting according to their religious belief.”