The Catholic community in the Philippines welcomes the new Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Edward Joseph Adams, who arrived on All Souls Day amid warm welcome by well-wishes led by His Eminence Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales and seven other bishops representing the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.
The Vatican Ambassador came at time when the political turbulence in the country is impacting a heavy toll on the lives of people, especially the poor whose preferential escape for now, at least for those who can, is to leave the country in search of a decent job, albeit the risks. The alarming millions of Filipinos leaving this country annually are proof enough.
This socio-political decadence has been fueled of late with a battery of corruptions and anomalous transactions publicly perceived, if allegedly, to be the handiwork of the incumbent government administration. (And one does not even say about syndicated gambling operations proudly managed by the government). In the papers, one would even read of a country that is heavily divided—piercing even the Catholic Church, or so the perception goes.
Division, of course, is a trademark of a healthy democracy especially when contending political sentiments, philosophies and persuasions are lodged in the free market of ideas in view of building up the country and in the service of the common good.
In the Philippines, however, this is not the case. Debatable as it may be, but the division in this part of the world is drawn between those who have received financial favors from gigantic political leaders and those who did not. Sadly, this is not democracy, because when a person is bought hardly can he or she be free to philosophize—or even moralize for those who are overtly religious.
Hopefully, the good Papal Nuncio will make a difference.