As May 2016 Presidential election nears, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) reminded the Filipinos to be careful in choosing their leaders and to use the 10 commandments when choosing who to vote for.
Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas, president of the CBCP, released a pastoral letter to his archdiocese and cautioned parishioners to “be careful in choosing leaders” and not to choose based on who are topping the pre-election surveys, according to Philippine Star.
“You are called to be authentic Catholic voters who decide from prayer and conscience. You are called to take courage and make moral decisions. Your vote can make heaven come down and make our country beautiful and good as God desires it,” he said.
“We need inspired and inspiring leaders who can rally the nation beyond the horizon of our dreams. Be free from the tyranny and pressure of trends and herds. Do it right! Choose what is right according to the Ten Commandments,” the bishop added.
Villegas said that leaders need intelligence and competence. The bishop reminded the people to learn from our previous mistakes when electing officials became corrupt and murderers. However, more than intelligence, people need God-fearing leaders who are also brave and loyal to the flag and to the Filipinos, he explained.
He explained that the first commandment, “I am the Lord your God, you shall not have strange gods before me,” means that people should not vote for an atheist.
The second commandment states that “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain,” which Villegas explained that “the prohibition of using disrespectful language and cuss words extends to the Church of the Lord, the saints and sacred things.” This is believed a swipe to Davao City Mayor Rody Duterte who allegedly cursed the Pope.
Philippines is dubbed as the Catholic nation in the Southeast as a large number of Filipinos are members of the Catholic Church.