Filipino boxing star Manny Pacquiao, a winner of world titles in eight different weight categories, is using a large chunk of his money for the glory of God, giving away 150 housing units to the homeless.
The 36-year-old boxing sensation reportedly spent P28.5 million, or about $604,000, of his own money to supply homes in Bales village, Maasim town, where he serves as a congressman.
"Give thanks to God for what you have received today. It's a gift from Him," said Pacquiao in a PhilBoxing.com report of the project, which is known as "Pacman Village" and will be ready as early as next February. "He's just using me to help you. Take good care of this property and don't sell it."
An outspoken Christian, Pacquiao clearly takes to heart Paul's words in Hebrews 13:16, where the apostle writes, "Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God."
In the future, Pacquiao plans to build a total of 600 units: "There are still lots of spaces here where we can build more houses. I'm targeting a total of 600 housing units to accommodate more homeless residents here," he told PhilBoxing.com.
Speaking to the news outlet, Tino Alcala, chair of Bales village, praised Pacquiao for his unparalleled generosity and willingness to sacrifice his own comfort for those in need.
"This is the kind of leader we're looking for. Unlike other congressmen, who disappeared and could no longer be seen after election, Cong. Pacquiao is always there every time we need him," Alcala said. "Pacquiao makes us feel government is taking good care of us."
As reported by the Gospel Herald, Pacquiao announced in October he plans to retire next year so he can focus on his political career, revealing he plans to run for a seat in the Senate in 2016.
"Vote for candidates who are competent and with a good heart. The future of this country depends on the kind of leaders we choose," Pacquiao said. "You should be proud of me as your congressman. I don't steal government money, in fact, I'm spending my own resources to help you. I neither sell my principle nor my vote in Congress."
Speaking to ESPN, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum revealed that Pacquiao's last fight will be April 9th.
"We talked very seriously, and he said, 'Bob, hopefully, by the middle of May I will have been elected senator in the Philippines, and at that point I cannot engage in boxing because I need to focus on the senate and I have to be in attendance'...Manny told me this fight on April 9 will be his last fight," Arum said.
He added, "There are hundreds of congressmen, but if he wins the Senate seat he has to be there to do the work. They do the real work in the Senate in the Philippines, not just make a lot of [expletive] speeches like they do in the Congress...It's a real job, and if Manny is serious about wanting to be president, these six years in the Senate would be like an audition, and for him to show his people that he really is a serious politician."