NATIONAL PROTESTANT, CATHOLIC CHURCH GROUPS AMONG PEACE AWARDEES

Philippines
1994-03-03 00:00:00

A Protestant Church coalition and the Catholic Association of Major Religious Superiors in the Philippines (AMRSP) are among the recipients of the country´s 1993 Aurora Aragon Quezon Peace Awards.

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP), the largest Protestant affiliation in the country, was honored at the award presentations Feb. 19 for peace education and institution-building.

A participant in the peace consultations between the government and rebels, the NCCP was cited for helping bring warring parties to the negotiation table and for implementing "people-building" ministries for 30 years.

The AMRSP was presented an award for peace advocacy and conflict resolution. Its organizing of Task Force Detainees of the Philippines, a human rights advocacy group, was particularly noted.

The superiors association was lauded "for decades of working side by side with the poor in their quest for self-reliance and for continuing education and formation work among the laity and the Religious towards Christian social values of truth, justice and human dignity."

In receiving the NCCP award, Feliciano Carino, the council´s general secretary, expressed hope that all avenues of approach would be tried in the quest to settle the Philippines´ internal problems.

On the other hand, AMRSP co-chair Redemptorist Father Ben Moraleda said peace should not be attained by repressing the rights of the marginalized sectors of society.

Other recipients of the 1993 Quezon Peace Award were Haydee Yorac, chair of the defunct National Unification Commission; nationalist Joaquin Roces and Father Ruben Villote, who works for the welfare of migrant youth.

First given in 1990, the award honors individuals and institutions that have contributed significantly to peace efforts in the country.

The award is named after Aurora Quezon, the wife of Manuel Quezon, the first president of the Philippines commonwealth (1935-1946) that preceded independence. The former first lady, active in peace-making programs, was killed in the 1940s in an ambush staged by communist guerrillas.

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