The leader of the Philippine bishops has called on Church leaders to stand up against what is morally wrong and defend life amid a spate of killings of suspected drug dealers in the country. "We will stand for and defend every person's life and dignity. We will shield the weak from harm. We will protect the confused from error," said Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan. Speaking during a meeting of Philippine bishops over the weekend, the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) warned that the time would come "when people will not tolerate sound doctrine." "Following their own desires and insatiable curiosity [people] will stop listening to the truth and will be diverted to myths," he warned. Archbishop Villegas urged his fellow bishops to continue teaching "that right is right and wrong, wrong ... even [if] it seems like a voice in a hostile wilderness."
He recalled that during the 1986 "people power" revolution, the bishops were mostly heeded and respected. Then came the “wilderness" in 2012 when the Philippine Congress passed the Reproductive Health law, allowing for state funding for artificial contraceptives. The bishops’ voices were “unheeded, mocked and ignored." And now that new president Rodrigo Duterte hurls insults at the bishops calling them “shameless hypocrites, children of whores," Arch. Villegas urged his fellow bishops not to withdraw from "the mission of the Lord ... [because the call is] not to be successful but to be faithful." (Source: UCAN)
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