Monumental serviceCebu Daily News
A three-foot image of the Visayan martyr Pedro Calungsod will be brought to Rome as a “passenger” for the Oct. 21 canonization rites.
The wooden sculpture of the soon-to-be declared saint will leave Cebu at 12:30 p.m. on Oct. 16, said Fr. Charles Jayme, official custodian of the Calungsod image.
The honor accorded to Pedro through the veneration of his statue should speak to our political leaders, who are now examining their war chests to allocate money for, among other things, campaign materials that will bear their names and images.
No one has a picture of Pedro, who was killed by Chamorro natives in what is now Guam back in the 17th century for his defense of the faith. Yet his legacy of dedication to a worthy cause will shine for all generations to see.
Certainly Pedro did not help Fr. Diego Luis de San Vitores in the mission of evangelization just so he would not be forgotten. His motivations were far nobler. But his story reverberates so much so that people want to see him if only through an artist’s vision.
In any case Pedro was already in the people’s hearts long before any image of him was made, because his goodness, as the faithful would understand, could not be kept permanently in oblivion.
Politicos, take heed. It is up to the people to remember you. Do not be overly concerned, nay, obsessed with making sure that your names and images are pasted on every available space, whether for you to be eternally remembered or remembered at the ballot this May 2013.
If you insist on foisting your names and faces on the public you will suffer a backlash. The people are sick and tired of you. They are likely to heed Chairman Sixto Brilliantes of the Commission on Elections: Remember the epals, forget them on election day.
Do not continue insulting the electorate’s intelligence or overestimating your own by entertaining the assumption that you will become worthy of a vote the more posters, streamers, flyers and whatever print material you have. You will not only prove yourselves satisfied with a false democracy, you will also make our locales uglier.
It is futile to make monuments of yourselves, really. Learn from the destruction of the bust of Ferdinand Marcos on Mount Pugo, La Union province; the statue of Joseph Stalin in Budapest, Hungary or of Saddam Hussein in Firdos Square in Bagdhad Iraq.
If you insist on being remembered, for an election or forever, you will become an object of scorn and you will be remembered for the day your avatars are torn down or sent to the dumps.
In contrast, if you learn from Pedro, hundreds of years may pass and your physical features may be forgotten, but your goodness and genuine service will eventually break the barriers of silence and forgetfulness because a wise people cannot for long stay ungrateful.
More from this Column:
- For Cebu City in three years
- Plugging the holes
- Fall of (some of ) Cebu’s old guard
- Enhancing notoriety
- Peace must reign in polls