Manila Bulletin

Run­ning priest likens Digong to ‘dark prophet’

- By LES­LIE ANN G. AQUINO

Run­ning priest Fr. Robert Reyes called Pres­i­dent Duterte a "dark prophet," who is try­ing to wake up the church from deep slum­ber.

"(Pres­i­dent) Duterte is a black prophet. You are the dark prophet wak­ing up the church from her slum­ber. Shak­ing us up priests from our moral turpi­tude be­cause many of us are in moral stu­por...can’t even re­sist temp­ta­tions," he said in a Mass with anti-death penalty ad­vo­cates at the Catholic Bish­ops Con­fer­ence of the Philip­pines (CBCP) of­fice in Manila, Wed­nes­day.

"What he says is very dif­fi­cult to lis­ten to, but per­haps quite a few of us priests and bish­ops de­serve the curs­ing if it will pu­rify us and wake us up from the slum­ber of for­get­ful­ness of vo­ca­tion," added Reyes.

Duterte has re­peat­edly cursed the bish­ops and priests for crit­i­ciz­ing his bloody cam­paign on drugs which al­legedly brought about the in­creas­ing ex­tra­ju­di­cial killings.

The pres­i­dent even ques­tioned the Church’s moral as­cen­dancy to crit­i­cize his drug war when it needs to po­lice its own ranks.

But some­times Reyes said be­cause of the curs­ing, many are now afraid to speak up and have cho­sen to re­main silent on the things that they see around them.

“If you speak up, you will be cursed from head to toe. But it’s about time that those be­ing cursed to stop be­ing afraid," he said.

"Conscience is drown­ing in a sea of blood and vi­o­lence, in a sea of fear, sea of in­dif­fer­ence, sea of sin­fulnes. A sea of fail­ing to go un­der the stan­dard of Je­sus be­cause many are at­tracted to the stan­dard of the devil held by the prophet of dark­ness," added Reyes.

But the priest ap­pealed to the faith­ful not to al­low their conscience to die as he urged them to at­tend the Walk for Life on Satur­day at the Quirino Grand­stand to stand up and voice their op­po­si­tion to ex­tra­ju­di­cial killings and death penalty.

"What is hap­pen­ing in our so­ci­ety...there is too much noise. Ev­ery­day there is curs­ing so we wont have si­lence any­more. If there is no si­lence, no­body lis­tens any­more. Peo­ple just lis­ten to the noisy one in Malacañang. If no­body lis­tens, conscience be­gins to die and when the conscience dies, peo­ple will die," Reyes said.

"Let us not al­low our conscience to die," he added.

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