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Duterte called out for attacking Church

MANILA (UCAN): Catholics in the Philippines are not letting relentless attacks on the Church and its leaders by the president, Rodrigo Duterte, go unchallenged.
 
The influential Sangguniang Laiko ng Pilipinas, the Council of the Laity, said “more than ever, (Catholics) are called upon to live a life worthy of our Christian vocation.”
 
The lay organisation has called on Catholics “to stand up for God and defend our faith in Him ... (and) renew our commitment to go and fill our churches.”

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Duterte renews attacks on Church

MANILA (UCAN): Archbishop Romulo Valles of Davao, head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, said Church leaders are “saddened and disturbed” by the recent statements by Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, who renewed his attacks on the country’s Catholic leaders and urged Filipinos to stop going to church altogether.
 
Duterte, who earlier this year called God “stupid,” suggested that people should instead build their own chapels where they can pray.
 

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Martial law extension in Mindanao mooted

MANILA (UCAN): “Tribal schools have been attacked by the military on the basis of martial law and the unfounded claim that these schools are communist fronts,” Rius Valle, a spokesperson for the Save Our Schools (SOS) Network said, responding to indications from the Philippine military on November 14 that it is keen to extend martial law period in Mindanao until the end of 2019.
 

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Fight injustice nun says as she leaves Philippines

MANILA (UCAN): “Pope Francis said you can’t call yourself a Christian if there are massive human rights violations and you are just silent,” Australian Sister Patricia Fox, of the Sisters of Our Lady of Sion, said as was finally compelled to leave the Philippines on the evening of November 3, after the Bureau of Immigration refused to extend her missionary visa.
 

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Bishop regrets dismissal of top labour official

MANILA (UCAN): Auxiliary Bishop Broderick Pabillo of Manila has expressed regret over the decision of the president, Rodrigo Duterte, to dismiss a top labour official for allegedly failing to put a stop to workers’ strikes.
 
Bishop Pabillo said the president’s decision to fire Joel Maglunsod, which was announced on October 2, was “very unfortunate” because the official understood the plight of workers.
 

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Mary Jane Veloso abandoned by Philippine government

MANILA (UCAN): The family of Mary Jane Veloso, who has been languishing on Indonesia’s death row since a 2011 conviction for drug trafficking, decried what her father, Cesar, described as the Philippine government’s lack of concern about the notorious case.
 
Veloso was arrested in 2010 by Indonesian authorities after 2.6 kilogrammes of heroin were found inside her luggage on her arrival in Jakarta from Malaysia. She claimed to have been duped being a drug mule by two recruiters: Maria Cristina Sergio and Julius Lacanilao. 

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Bishops dismiss Duterte’s resignation threat

MANILA (UCN): At least two Catholic bishops have dismissed the threat by Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, that he would resign out of frustration over his failure to address corruption in government.
 
In a speech on August 14, Duterte said he was ready to quit the presidency should the military and police find the right successor.
 

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Around the traps

Australian missionary staves off Philippine deportation again
 
MANILA (UCAN): Sister Patricia Fox, of the Sisters of Our Lady of Sion, who has been facing down the government of Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, won a reprieve from deportation after her lawyers filed a motion for reconsideration on July 22.
 
The Bureau of Immigration found the nun to allegedly be “in violation of the limitations and conditions of her missionary visa” for reportedly joining partisan political activities.

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Hopes for peace with new autonomous Muslim region

MANILA (UCAN) “Peace and harmony will be enjoyed if this new Bangsamoro government is inclusive and does not discriminate others,” said Archbishop Martin Jumoad of Ozamiz in Mindanao, after Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, signed off on a law on July 26 that aims to give greater autonomy to Muslims in the southern Philippines.
 
The Bangsamoro Organic Law comes into effect four years after the government signed a peace agreement with the rebel Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
 

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Duterte’s hype fizzling out with students and teachers

MANILA (Agencies): The problem with Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, is that he “lives on hype, on promises.” Fidelino Josol, a 50-year old public schoolteacher, was reported as saying in an article in La Croix on July 25.
 
She said, “I voted for him because he sounded firm and full of convictions,” but noted that Duterte’s promises “all went down the drain.”
 
The article noted that Duterte, seems to have failed to impress his “children.” 

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