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A migrant desk for every parish

MANILA (Mabuhay) : With few parishes in The Philippines that do not have any migrant workers among their members, the bishops decided at their July 5 to 12 plenary meeting to urge every parish in the country to open a migrant desk to help families address the many problems that their absence may create.

They want the Church to expand its migrant ministry by setting up a system that will assist those who want to work abroad, from the diocesan level right down to every parish.

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Torture in police and military cells is routine

MANILA (UCAN) : Human rights groups from six countries have called on The Philippines to ensure justice for torture victims, a call that has also been endorsed by the bishops of The Philippines.

“We are alarmed by information... that torture is still rife in The Philippines and, in particular, that it appears to be routine during interrogations by police officers,” a joint statement released on July 16 in Manila by Amnesty International and the Bar Associations says.

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Aquino’s anointed one

MANILA (Mabuhay) : In naming the secretary for the Interior and Local Government, Mar Roxas, as his successor, the current president, Noynoy Aquino, has anointed him as his chosen one to move into Malacañang after the May election next year.


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Bishops back the Bangsamoro

MANILA (AsiaNews) : At the end of its three-day Plenary Assembly the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of The Philippines issued a press release on July 13 presenting its views on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law, which would establish a special autonomous Muslim administered region in Mindanao.

The bishops reiterated that any law should be based on social justice and moral values. The crux of the matter is reaching a deal on the bill between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.

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Mining exacts a higher toll than its spectacular tragedies

MANILA (Mabuhay) : Large scale mining in The Philippines was back in the headlines when the wall of an open-pit coal mine operated by the Semirara Mining and Power Company in Caluya, Antique, collapsed, leaving nine people dead at 3.45am on July17.

Thirteen people were working in the mine at the time, but only four managed to escape the falling wall.

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Church Climate Petition launched in Manila

MANILA (Agencies) : Inspired by Praised Be: On care for our common land, the environmental encyclical of Pope Francis, the archdiocese has launched the Catholic Climate Petition Campaign spearheaded by Luis Cardinal Tagle calling on all Filipinos to take action now for the sake of what the pope has described as Our common home.

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Pope’s apology to indigenous peoples gives heart to hunted down Filipinos

MANILA (UCAN) : As news broke in The Philippines of Pope Francis’ apology over the role the Catholic Church played in the displacement of indigenous peoples in Latin America, Kharlo Manano was handing the Philippine Commission on Human Rights a list of indigenous schools threatened by incessant military operations.

In Midsayap, Cotabato, a young Manobo, Roland Dalin, was speaking of his dream to study law and bring justice and defend his tribe.

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Call for prayer for Iglesia ni Cristo

MANILA (Agencies) : In the amidst of a corruption scandal involving the leadership of the Iglesia ni Cristo (Church of Christ), the bishops of The Philippines are calling on people to pray for the peaceful resolution of what appears to be an ongoing crisis with no resolution in sight.

The president of the bishops’ conference, Archbishop Socrates Villegas, told CBCP News that it is only right that the Catholic Church responds to an appeal for prayer from leaders of the Iglesia ni Cristo.

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The environment is on loan not time payment

MANILA (Mabuhay) : We are not buying nature on time payment, nor can we in any sense claim to hold ownership of it. It is simply on loan and should be handed on in as good as or even better condition than we received it

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Elect three Ks not four Gs

MANILA (Agencies) : Before there were only three Gs feared most by honest citizens during the election season—guns, goons and gold—but the head of the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting, Henrietta de Villa, is lamenting that now there are four, with the addition of another G for greed.