Philippines Catholic bishops avoid rallies against government corruption scandal
Facebook Twitter Google+ Pinterest Addthis

.- Catholic bishops and other Catholic leaders in the Philippines decided not to join a Friday rally protesting the president and alleged high-level corruption in Manila, UCA News reports.

Instead the bishops held a morning “Mass for Truth” at their headquarters, prior to the afternoon rally organized by opposition politicians and leftist groups in the country’s main business district in Metro Manila.

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and some cabinet members face harsh criticism after allegations of corruption in a now-canceled program to build a national broadband network.

Rodolfo Lozada, a former government consultant, testified before a Senate committee on February 8.  He claimed a Chinese telecommunications company’s $329 million broadband service contract contained $130 million in kickbacks.  Lozada implicated the former head of the election commission, Benjamin Abalos Sr., and President Arroyo’s husband, Jose Miguel Arroyo, among others.

The bishops’ “Mass for Truth” was held at the headquarters of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).  The Mass was a response to CBCP president Archbishop Angel Lagdameo’s call for “communal action” in the nation’s “search for truth and justice.”

In a February 14 statement about the corruption hearings, the Catholic bishops said, "Let us pray, in particular, that these hearings will be protected and guided by God's Spirit, so that the truth will be ferreted out and our government and people can move on along the road of true progress and peace."

In his homily for the February 15 Mass, Scalabrini Father Edwin Corros said all Filipinos, especially during Lent, needed to pray and to make sacrifices for the truth to emerge.  He urged others to follow the example of Rodolfo Lozada.

Bishop Deogracias Iniquez told UCA News on February 13 that he would not attend the protest rally against the president because it was sponsored by the political opposition. 

Sister Estrella Castalone, executive secretary of the Association of Major Religious Superiors (AMRS), denied reports her organization sponsored the rally.  Sister Castalone, a Salesian nun, said the rally was a “political exercise of the opposition” and that her organization was not partisan.   She said her organization’s involvement in the controversy was not to protest the government but to uphold the truth.

According to UCA News, Sister Castalone said the AMRS became involved with Lozada after his wife wrote to the group and asked for their help, saying she feared for her husband’s safety.  Rodolfo Lozada claimed police kidnapped him on February 5 when he returned from hiding in Hong Kong.

Protesters at the rally revived the slogan “Enough, too much, act now,” used in the “People Power” rallies against President Ferdinand Marcos before he was ousted from office in February 1986. 

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google

Featured Videos

Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Little Sisters of the Poor press conference in Denver
Family thrilled to see Pope Francis in Istanbul
Syrian Refugee, Sara, 14, Before Meeting Pope
Ebola orphans thousands of children in West Africa
One year after Haiyan: Philippines rebuilds homes, lives
An Indian contribution to the Vatican's Synod on the Family
Christ Cathedral CNA video Sept 2014
Alejandro Bermudez of CNA accepts ice bucket challenge
'The Real Albania,' remembering those who fled
Pope Francis in Albania, "one of the most important visits of the post-communist era in Albania"
Pope Francis greets paralyzed man who risked all to see him
Franciscans on the banks of the Tiber in Rome, working for the New Evangelization
Pilgrimage from Czech Republic to Assisi and Rome for intentions
Testimony of young Indian who met Pope in Korea
Preparations of the Closing Mass of 6th Asian Youth Day
Missionary of Charity, Korea
Testimony of Christian Love during Pope's Visit to Korea
Religious Sisters in South Korea react to Pope Francis kissing a baby
Warm atmosphere during Holy Mass at Daejeon World Cup Stadium
Images inside Pope Francis flight to South Korea

Liturgical Calendar

December 21, 2014


All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 21:23-27


Daily Readings

Gospel:: Lk 1: 26-38

Saint of the Day

St. Romuald »


Homily of the Day

Mt 21:23-27