Bishop Soc Villegas tells faithful: Vote like Christ
Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas urged the Catholic faithful on Sunday “not to leave God and “bring their faith” when they cast their votes on May 13.
“Be critical voters. Be Godly voters. Bring your faith as you choose. Do not leave God when you vote,” he said on Sunday in a pastoral message to the faithful in his diocese.
“When we vote as if God did not exist, the nation suffers. Democracy is at risk. When we demand that religion be purely a private matter that it should not touch political choices, society suffers. Democracy is hurt,” Villegas said.
“And if we continue to keep ethics out of public service, democracy will be killed quietly unnoticed. And we die deprived of our freedoms,” he added.
Quoting Pope Benedict XVI, Villegas warned that when religion is removed from the political arena, public life is sapped of its motivation and politics takes on a domineering and aggressive character.
“The kind of leaders we elect reveals the kind of people we are. The winners in elections are mirrors of the values and aspirations, dreams and hopes of the people who voted for them. It can also show our backward moving society,” he added.
According to the prelate, “God will judge us for the way we vote. Our children will judge us for the way we vote.
“This election is important for them. Think of them,” he said.
“Be careful. Be critical. Be courageous. How would Christ vote? Vote like Christ. Do not leave God at the altar. Bring your Christian faith when you vote,” Villegas said.
He then enumerated the main concerns in society which voters should use to assess their candidates namely: kamatayan (death), kabastusan (vulgarity), korapsyon (corruption), kahirapan (poverty), kasarinlan (independence) and kasinungalingan (lies).
“Look at the candidates and ask: Have they given the orders to kill? Have they protected liars? Truth is not a political issue; it is a moral issue. Human dignity goes beyond political coalitions. It is a godly concern,” Villegas said.
“Have they contributed to the current problem of 6 Ks? Have they actively cheered and encouraged, enabled and supported the purveyors of the 6 Ks?,” he asked.
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