The word war continues between president-elect Rodrigo Duterte and the Church, as former Archbishop Oscar Cruz speaks up to defend the sacred institution.
In a press conference on Thursday, June 2, Duterte promised that he would expose the abuses of the Catholic Church during his six-year-reign. He lashed at the Church for campaigning the Catholics not to vote for him due to his womanizing tendencies, despite the fact that clergymen molested children and have families outside their vow of celibacy.
The incoming president particularly criticized Cruz for suggesting that he should have filed a case before to prove that he was truly a victim of abuse. He also called the former clergyman an ‘idiotic bishop’.
The retired Archbishop responded to the press on Friday, June 3, stating that he will not keep quiet if Duterte keeps on “attacking” the Church. Cruz also shared that a mutual friend between him and Duterte visited him and asked him not to give comments against the presumptive president.
“The substance of our conversation was that ‘Let us keep quiet for now. For a while, let us keep cool, so to speak, so that there will be peace.’ And I said, yes, I have no problem with that. I only said that I hope he (Duterte) will also keep quiet, and that was the agreement,” he said.
He mentioned that he has not been granting interviews to the media for the past few weeks, respecting the ‘agreement’ which Duterte has already desecrated by criticizing the Church again.
“All of a sudden, here he comes again saying this and that. I don’t think it’s also fair that I keep quiet, especially when he speaks against the Church,” he added.