So I was reading today’s paper when I chanced upon the day’s selection of letters to the editor. As it turns out, PDI has picked up new feedback regarding the RH Bill, one of which is the usual rhetoric priests have been stating to the press and, sadly, during homilies:
“…Each and every Catholic, from the Pope to any simple lay man, is bound to abide by the teachings being taught by the Church. Any believer who does not abide with the teachings 100 percent is not a genuine Catholic. He is a Catholic only in name. There is no traditional or modern Catholic. What I know is, one is either a Catholic or a non-Catholic.
Noynoy Aquino has the right to explain his side. But the explanation he gave is not right. The Reproductive Health bill has anti-life provisions. Ricardo Cardinal Vidal is right in describing Noynoy as one with a tendency to be anti-life. The intention might be plausible, but the end or intention does not justify the means.
A person who cannot stand firm, and with conviction, on his faith cannot be trusted. A person who is not afraid of offending God, Who will ultimately judge him on the basis of his actions, will certainly, 100 percent, offend the rights and feelings of human beings who cannot see everything.
Yeah, I know – same old, same old. I was reading through his letter again so I could fire off a rebuttal for PDI’s next print, and what was when this other letter caught my eye:
I will try to be civil and remain respectful, but I must admit that I seethed with anger when I saw Ricardo Cardinal Vidal on TV, threatening to tell people not to vote for Noynoy Aquino because the latter supports the Reproductive Health bill. He also said that those who have the tendency to be anti-life would not receive any support from the Church.
The cardinal is not supporting Noynoy because of a “tendency,” yet he continues to wholeheartedly support and remain blindly loyal to President Macapagal-Arroyo whom subordinates have called evil and a bitch, and who cheat and lie and steal and tolerate the countless killings of innocent civilians. So who is now more anti-life? The regime which has caused extrajudicial killings and disappearances, or a person whose only mistake, if mistake it is, is to throw his support, in good faith, to the RH bill?
And was it not Cardinal Vidal who ordered the priests in Cebu not to say Mass for Jun Lozada? And what made him think I will not vote for Noynoy because he said so? The cardinal and the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines should stop deluding themselves that they still have influence over the millions of Filipinos who continue to steadfastly cling to their faith despite the corruption in the Church.
I would say that the Church has become the biggest coddler of corrupt politicians who, for as long as they continue to be generous to the Church, will continue to occupy preferred seats in churches. As for the not-so-generous faithful, the Church will reserve for them the dilapidated and broken pews.
How many people has the cardinal converted in his life as a priest? Isn’t it a fact that many Catholics are leaving the Church?
Gentlemen, there is a word in the gamer’s dictionary that succintly describes Mr Bonite’s letter:
The clincher here is that despite his tone, Mr. Bonite here is not some angry nonbeliever. By his own admission, he’s a full-blooded Catholic:
…”I am not leaving the Church, but I have resolved to continue to denounce the abuses of our Church leaders who, in the first place, are the single biggest reason the country is in its present pitiful state.
Cardinal Vidal’s standard of morality allows him to continue to blindly support the excesses of the present dispensation, and yet he is too quick to raise a howl against Noynoy for his support of the RH bill, he whose name has never been associated with any shenanigan. This makes me really angry.
It’s one thing for the RCC to receive flak from outsiders and non-Catholics; they can easily tell us that we have no right to criticize them since we don’t understand their theology, we’re not under the Vatican, etc.
But when they’re called out for their unabashed hypocrisy by their own flock, I can’t help but feel that there’s hope for our country yet. That and a tinge of Schadenfreude, but that’s besides the point.
That’s why I prefer not to use blanket statements when I diss religions – because (hopefully at least), even the must theologically communities ones will always have its own dissenting voices, the brave men and women who hope to change their belief for the better.
I don’t know about you, but Bonite’s letter made my day. His email’s available in the link in case you’re planning to extend some kudos, or if you think he deserves an invite to Filipino Freethinkers.