Tagle to gov’t leaders: Put ‘mission before ambition’


Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle. RYAN LEAGOGO/

With only 10 months left before the 2016 national elections, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle on Friday reminded leaders in public service to put “mission above their own ambition.”

Speaking before a packed audience attending the two-day Servant Leadership in Public Service forum in a hotel in Ortigas Center, Pasig City, Tagle reminded leaders to look at the life of Christ as an example of true service.


“The life and service of Jesus were defined by his passion for mission—not ambition, not position,” he said, adding that “becoming a servant—becoming a slave even—is a matter of choice.”

As exemplified by Christ, he said leaders in public service are expected to serve others first instead of being served by the people. He added that it’s a choice a public leader must choose—to serve or to be served.


“The elections are near. If you’re thinking of gifting those who will run for public office, give them a basin, towel and pitcher,” he said in Filipino, in reference to Christ’s washing of his disciples’ feet.

The prelate also called on the people to be wary of public leaders who extend their help like a double-edged sword.

“Not all those who give, give wholeheartedly. There are those who give but in fact enslave you,” he warned. “That’s the kind of leader you should be afraid of—someone who appears to be helping you but in reality is enslaving you.”

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TAGS: Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, Servant Leadership in Public Service, Tagle
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