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Manila bans Eucharistic election profiteering

MANILA (SE): The common practice of priests celebrating Masses for politicians at the launch of their campaigns and at other significant events has finally been banned by the archbishop of Manila, Luis Cardinal Tagle.

On December 22, Cardinal Tagle forbad his priests to take part in the practice that for years has been condemned as a form of complicity by the Church in political corruption.

Politicians are keen to put on a show of Church support to boost their standing in the eyes of the people and many priests have also been keen to celebrate the Masses and even crowd onto the altar in a display of concelebrated force for the fat red envelopes that come their way during the recessional procession.

The cardinal said the Eucharist is a source and sign of unity and its celebration should not be seen as “favouring or endorsing particular political candidates, organisations or parties.”

He also reminded lay ministers running for public office to take leave from their ministry if they have filed for candidacy in this year’s national elections.

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