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If you love the environment you better watch your back

DAVAO (UCAN): The Church is warning environmental advocates to watch their backs, as they have again become the target of the mining company goons in recent weeks. Father Edwin Gariquez said on February 2 that the worst of it is that the government is not doing anything to prevent the murders or bring those responsible to justice.

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What else dies with the peace process?

MARAWI (UCAN): Barely two years after the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) signed a peace deal, the war-torn south of the nation continues to face the risk of massive displacement of people.

The failure of the House of Representatives to pass the Bangsamoro Basic Law has dashed the hopes of people who have experienced centuries of armed struggle in defence of their homeland.

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Lenten appeal for children

MANILA (Agencies): In his pastoral letter for Ash Wednesday, the archbishop of Manila, Luis Cardinal Tagle, called for support for a Church-based feeding programme for the country’s malnourished children. This year’s target is to provide for 25,000 of them.

“It only takes 1,200 pesos ($198), or 10 pesos ($1.65) a day to bring back a hungry and malnourished child to a healthy state in six months,” Cardinal Tagle told CBCP News.

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If you won’t vote for evil don’t vote at all

MANILA (UCAN): In responding to the widespread accusation that the upcoming May 9 presidential election in The Philippines is fielding such a poor crop of probable candidates that choosing one to work for the common good of the whole country may be a bit like choosing between the devil or the deep blue sea.

In a pastoral statement released on February 3, Being Eucharistic in Life and Deeds, the bishops say voters must be guided by a sense of the common good when choosing their leaders.

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Famine in Basilan

MANILA (SE): Bishop Martin Jumoad, from Basilan in Mindanao, is describing the situation in his drought-stricken diocese as a famine.

“The Church and state must collaborate to help those who have no rice and have nothing to eat,” he told CBCP News. “All of us have a societal responsibility.”

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New law aimed at wiping out dynasties

MANILA (UCAN): A new law that, for the first time in Philippine history addresses the banning of political dynasties in the country, has received a widespread popular acclaim.

The president, Noynoy Aquino, signed the bill into law on January 19 prohibiting young people, who have relatives holding elective positions in government, from seeking a seat in the SangguniangKabataan (Youth Council).

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Lack of mercy questions reality of hospitality

MANILA (SE): Archbishop Socrates Villegas cast a shadow of doubt across the depth of the famed Philippine hospitality, saying in his message for Migrant and Refugee Sunday published on January 17, that the nation has failed to develop a merciful heart and without mercy, cannot offer true hospitality.

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Tragedy at pope’s Mass not all doom and gloom

MANILA (UCAN): Jun and Judy Padasas will never forget the day Pope Francis came to the central Philippine city of Tacloban just over one year ago.

As the pope was blessing thousands of teary-eyed victims of Typhoon Haiyan on January 17, their 27-year-old daughter, Kristel Mae Padasas, died.

Padasas was waiting for the papal convoy to pass when a strong wind blew a large speaker stack on top of her, crushing her to death.

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Congress not for the campaign trail

CEBU (Agencies): No one can accuse Filipino politicians of missing an opportunity of electioneering and with a presidential election in the air this year the large gathering of people in Cebu for the Eucharistic Congress presented such a good opportunity that the organisers had to appeal to them to respect the fact that it was  not about politics.

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Death by neglect for Peace Process

COTABATO (UCAN): “Hatred, prejudice and bias against Muslims (are responsible) for the death of the Peace Process in Mindanao,” the archbishop of Cotabato, Orlando Cardinal Quevedo, said after too few to form a quorum turned up to the House of Representatives for the vote on the Bangsamoro Basic Law on January 28.

The well orchestrated no-show ploy ensured the Peace Process a death by neglect.

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