Bishop Tells Officials: Lead Exemplary Lives

Nov 07, 2003 08:42 AM EST

BACOLOD Bishop Vicente Navarra has urged government officials and politicians to lead exemplary lives amid the present social and political instability which, he said, create confusion and pessimism among the people and faithful.

In his pastoral letter, Navarra said, “Be mindful of your dignity as Christians and trustees of public welfare and the common good. Redeem the tarnished Philippine politics by leading exemplary lives, as individuals and family men and women, who in the exercise of your office and family affairs are free from reproach and are beyond reasonable doubts and suspicions.”

Navarra cited the failed Oakwood mutiny in Makati last July 27, and other “deplorable and condemnable” events thereafter which caused great alarm and grave feelings of insecurity among different sectors of the Philippine society.

He said the scenario has worsened when the Senate, in its attempt to investigate and bring out the truth behind the Jose Pidal exposé, has been practically wasting time, giving attention to accusations and counter-accusations which obviously appear inutile and a farce.

“We expect wisdom and fruits of hope for a brighter future from your serious and dedicated study of our country’s and people’s needs and condition, translated in the enlightened and liberating legislations that you pass,” Navarra called on the country’s legislators.

“And yet we know all these are triggered by distorted political ambitions and maneuvers which all redound to private and partisan interests and gains - all for and in the name of sordid politics,” he added.

“As a result, our people are demoralized and panic-stricken. Our economy suffers a great loss and faces a bleak future. But, over and above all, our government and democracy are gravely imperiled.”

On the other hand, the Bishop appealed to the military, police and enlisted men in the armed forces to maintain peace and order.

“As cstodians of pace and oder and of the protection and safety of our people you have to uphold the same peace and order at all costs, but never through violence and armed means.”

He added: “You have to ensure a stain-less uniform and career by your straightforward and courageous performance of your duties in spite of external pressures and shameful personal considerations.”

To the judiciary, he said, "We entreat you to administer justice swiftly.”

He also urged members of the media to be faithful to the truth and to avoid sensationalism.

Moreover, Navarra urged the ordinary citizens “not to stand or sit idly by watching how peace based on justice is being destroyed, trampled upon and made a caricature by people who use their arms and weapons, money, power and influence.”

“We must speak out and register our protests and denunciations against crimes, vices, immoralities and injustices, denouncing their perpetrators and unmasking their lies and deceits,” Navarra said.