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Social ills take center stage on Ash Wednesday in Manila

Biggest sin of most Filipinos is being silent amid killings, corruption

Social ills take center stage on Ash Wednesday in Manila

Bishop Pablo Virgilio David of Kalookan blesses a relocation site for informal settlers in his diocese during the observance of Ash Wednesday on Feb. 14. (Photo by Jire Carreon)

 

ucanews.com reporter, Manila
Philippines

February 14, 2018

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A Catholic bishop in north Manila celebrated Mass and went around a relocation site for slum dwellers to dramatize the observance of the start of the Lenten season on Ash Wednesday.

Bishop Pablo Virgilio David of Kalookan stressed the importance of helping people, especially during the season of Lent, more than building parishes and church structures.

He said a large number of people in his diocese could not afford to have a decent home, so he though of starting a housing project.

"This is a concrete expression of charity," said the prelate.

In another part of Manila, Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo chided Catholics for remaining silent despite daily corruption and killings in the government's anti-drug war.

"The biggest sin of Filipinos is the sin of omission," said the bishop in his Ash Wednesday homily.

"It seems it's okay to us even if there is corruption. Its okay that there are killings because we are not part of that," he added.

He said the outside world is already asking whether the Philippines is a Christian nation.

"How come we have extrajudicial killings? Why don't we give importance to human rights? Why do we allow our leaders to say bad words?" said Bishop Pabillo.

"It's as if we do not care, that's why we are being laughed at," he said, adding that it is a grave sin if people fail in their social responsibility to speak up against injustice.

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