Photo courtesy of Philstar.com
We believe, that God is at work to make each person a new being in Christ and the whole world God’s Kingdom in which love, justice and peace prevail. That the Kingdom of God is present where faith in Jesus Christ is shared, where healing is given to the sick, where food is given to the hungry, where light is given to the blind, and where liberty is given to the captive and oppressed. – Article V, UCCP Statement of Faith
President Rodrigo Roa Duterte will face the nation once again on July 26, 2021 with a performance badly tainted by his militarist pandemic response. We have reached the record of a country with the longest quarantine lockdown, with the worst economic downfall, with the largest work displacements, with the biggest external debts, and flabbiest vaccination rollout. Duterte’s regime is also haunted by the fact of the rising cases of Covid-19 in the country and consequently an upsurge in death records.
Over the past 5 years, we have concretely experienced the woeful socio-economic-political condition as a result of this regime’s misrule and militaristic methods even in the way it handled the Covid-19 pandemic. We are disheartened and enraged by his continuing harassment of the Church even to the extent of arresting our pastors and members on account of trumped up and maliciously crafted criminal charges.
It upsets us to see the regime engaging in early politicking for the 2022 elections more willingly than paying serious attention to more pressing concerns like hunger, unemployment and the ongoing health crisis. President Duterte will surely give us an entirely different picture of our situation as a nation to lure the people into believing that the whole country is in the good hands of his inept and cruel administration.
This 6th and final State of Nation Address (SONA) will be implausible to us and to the majority of the Filipino people. Painting for us a nation sailing smoothly to hide the hard facts about our unparalleled difficulties and miseries under his rule are conjectural claims bereft of facticity. The quality of life of the Filipino people has worsened and history will judge this dispensation as failure of the State to institute social justice and rejection of people’s yearning to live abundantly and peacefully. With this, we could no longer foresee a better future for this kind of governance. Its twilight days are hastening on!
Knowing our constraints without God in the picture, we call upon God to guide us, enlighten and empower us in facing the tumults of our days.
Hear, O God, our earnest plea on behalf of the Filipino people. Free us from fear and awaken us from our disturbing silence amidst all these woeful realities. Embolden us to defend the powerless victims and be in solidarity with the struggling people. Send us forth to where the voice of justice must be proclaimed and the liberating truth declared. Give us courage to be your voice and be instruments of your peace!
We call on our constituents to join us in prayers and to remain vigilant during these perilous times. Let us all remain steadfast in faith keeping in our hearts and minds that “the Lord’s mercy never comes to an end as they are new every morning. Great is God’s Faithfulness” indeed!
THE UCCP COUNCIL OF BISHOPS
July 26, 2021
Bishop Melzar D. Labuntog
Bishop Joseph G. Agpaoa
North Luzon Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Emergencio D. Padillo
Middle Luzon Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Joel E. Tendero
South Luzon Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Jerome C. Baris
East Visayas Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Feliciana P. Tenchavez
West Visayas Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Ligaya F. San Francisco
Northwest Mindanao Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Hamuel G. Tequis
Southeast Mindanao Jurisdictional Area
Bishop Arturo R. Asi
Bishop Jezer E. Bertoldo
Bishop Isaias L. Bingtan
Bishop Erme R. Camba
Bishop Ebenezer C. Camino
Bishop Constante D. Claro
Bishop Gabriel A. Garol
Bishop Hilario M. Gomez, Jr.
Bishop Marino I. Inong
Bishop Reuel Norman O. Marigza
Bishop Roel P. Mendoza
Bishop Jaime R. Moriles
Bishop Eliezer M. Pascua
Bishop Dulce Pia-Rose
Bishop Elorde M. Sambat
Bishop Anacleto G. Serafica
Bishop Jessie S. Suarez
Bishop Rizalino Q. Taganas
Bishop Modesto D. Villasanta
Please click this link for the downloadable file, Statement on the 6th State of the Nation Address of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte