The Pontificate - Contribute to help UCA News
The Pontificate - Contribute to help UCA News
UCA News


Families of 'disappeared' stage calvary of injustice in Manila

Cardinal Tagle reminds priests to shun and fight manipulative strategies that sow division reporters, Manila reporters, Manila

Updated: March 29, 2018 09:15 AM GMT
Featured Authors - Columnists | Make a Contribution
Families of 'disappeared' stage calvary of injustice in Manila

An activist carries a cross that symbolizes issues that burden the poor during a "Calvary of the Poor" in Manila. (Photo by Jire Carreon)

Share this article :
Families of desaparecidos, or victims of enforced disappearances, marked the observance of Holy Week in Manila with a "calvary of injustice."

The event was highlighted by a "truth-telling session" that featured reflections on Jesus' last words, which participants related to the drug-related killings in the country.  

"Although victims, we choose to be Christ's presence on Earth," said Edita Burgos, mother of missing activist Jonas Burgos.

Marylou dela Cruz told of the disappearance of her daughter who went missing in October 2017 after being suspected of involvement in the drug trade.

The wife of a victim of a drug-related killing shared how she tried to refuse to accept the news that her husband was killed.

"Even if he might have been involved in drugs, being sick, he should have been rehabilitated, and given the chance to reform himself," said Catherine Bacani.


Holy Week protests

Earlier in the week, urban poor settlers staged Holy Week rallies to protest what they described as the deteriorating human rights situation.

Among the issues they raised were the continuing execution of suspected drug users and dealers, the passage of a new tax law, and the demolition of shanties in Manila slums.

The protesters carried crosses to signify their suffering that they likened to that of Jesus.

"We consider these crosses not just of our poor but of our entire country," said Sammy Gamboa of the Freedom from Debt Coalition.

He said the crosses they carry were not created by any divine power "but by oppressive policies that skew toward and favor only the rich."

Activist priest Robert Reyes said those responsible for the "extrajudicial killing" of Jesus have come to life in the present day.

He likened Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to the Pharisees during Jesus' time who were blinded by their lust for power and demanded the death of Christ.

"[Duterte] is closer not to Pilate but to the chief priest of the scribes because he has put to death innocent people under his war on drugs," said the priest.


Cardinal Tagle slams politics

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila, meanwhile, warned priests to shun and fight "manipulative strategies" that sow division to serve political interests.

During the Chrism Mass on Holy Thursday, the prelate noted that technological advancement in communication has been reduced to strategies to manipulate people.

"Manipulation thrives in the context of disrespect," said Cardinal Tagle. "That's why fake news proliferates ... deliberately deceiving people," he added.

He told priests who renewed their priestly vows to "put a stop to fake news."

"We are not called and consecrated to bring fake news, only Good News especially through the integrity of our lives," said the Manila prelate.

He said "evangelization happens in a covenant relationship not in a context where some see people as objects to be manipulated for one's purposes."

The cardinal said proclaiming the Gospel requires "attentiveness" to human conditions, specifically to the poor and those who are suffering.

"Many people don't listen to the Good News because they don't see it from the one talking," said Tagle as he urged priests to maintain their "integrity" as bearers of the Good News.

He said Catholics these days "are looking for people of integrity whose words will match their action."

Support UCA News...

UCA News provides a unique service, bringing you the voices of emerging churches and helping you see efforts made to evangelize and bring relief to people in all manner of need.

UCA News has more than 40 full time and part time reporters, editors and administrators bringing you this service from across 23 countries in south, southeast and east Asia. You, too, can be part of their efforts by contributing even a small amount to keep UCA News available to the world.
Click here to consider the options available to you.

Your contribution to UCA News will immensely help us continue to grow a strong media community by harnessing information technology to inform, engage, inspire and influence the Catholics of Asia and the world.

As a gesture of our gratitude to your commitment to UCA News, we are pleased to gift you a free PDF Book/e-Book titled Mission in Asia when you make a contribution.

UCA News Donate
UCA Newsletter
Thank you. You are now signed up to our Daily Full Bulletin newsletter

Also Read

UCA News Podcast
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution