I had previously posted a statement from Fr. Mark Villanueva, CFC Toronto's spiritual director. It seems in the propaganda campaign being waged by the FFL, they have mistakenly (or purposely) taken Fr. Mark's words out of context. This is a clarification email directly from him.
From: Mark VillanuevaTo whom it may concern:I am shocked by the statement, which I quote below:Now that Father Mark has found out the real truth, he said that his open letter is already outdated, then he made a decision that he is resigning as spiritual director of CFC GK and he assured that CFC FFL will have a spiritual director by November to be assigned by the Bishop of Toronto.The truth? What truth? I stand by everything I wrote in my letter to CFC Toronto. Whoever is disseminating this information from the FFL has taken me out of context. I DEMAND AN APOLOGY!This is what I have been telling everyone:1) Some parts of my letter are outdated in so far as FFL has decided to move on. My appeal for unity has fallen on deaf ears!!!2) It is no secret that I have been toying with the idea of resigning as the spiritual director long before the separation took place. I have voiced out my intention at the Filipino Priests' Pastoral Council Meeting held at Blessed John XXIII Church in February with the Bishop. I have been the spiritual director since 1998. In the Archdiocese of Toronto, a pastor is usually appointed for six years renewable for a second term, but not more. The bishop agreed in principle and asked that the Filipino Priests' Pastoral Council look into this question in the Fall and make formal recommendations to him.3) I have expressed my intention to Ricky and company when they took me out for lunch on the occasion of my birthday last May. This has nothing to do with the breakup!!!3) I have mentioned my intention to Francis Berroya in one of our telephone conversations.4) These are also my reasons:a) I am the chaplain of the entire Filipino Catholic community in the Archdiocese of Toronto. I PERCEIVE MY ROLE AS A UNITER NOT A DIVIDER! All the Filipino Lay movements come to me for advise. With FFL's decision to separate, I thought it would be wiser to appoint a spiritual director for CFC Toronto and another for FFL. THIS WILL HELP EVERYONE MOVE ON!b) I am also preparing for my Comprehensives for the doctoral studies I am pursuing at the University of Toronto. There is already too much in my plate.5) I DO NOT SEE ANY MERIT TO THE SEPARATION! But since, FFL leaders are intent to separate, I need to respect that. I EVEN ASKED A SECOND TIME IF THIS IS WHAT THE FFL LEADERS REALLY WANT TO DO TO MAKE SURE I REALLY HEARD THEM CORRECTLY. As the chaplain for the entire Filipino Catholic community, it is my duty to make proper recommendations to the bishop REGARDLESS OF WHERE I AM ON THE ISSUE. I am schooled in Hermeneutic phenomenology. I should know how to bracket my biases and prejudices.Regarding properties:1) I did raise the question of properties (including intellectual properties) to Frank Padilla and company when they came to the rectory. It was Frank Padilla who suggested that the properties be divided equally or that FFL indemnify CFC or vice versa. I warned them of possible litigations since under Canadian law, FFL has no right over these properties. I even mentioned to them what happened in the Philippines at the turn of the century when the Aglipayans took our churches and our books . They were ordered to return the properties to the Catholic Church by the Philippine Supreme Court.2) I also raised the question of two CFC groups in a given parish. I appealed to Frank Padilla and his group not to put the pastors in our parishes to choose between CFC and FFL. This will put them in a very awkward position.3) I also raised the plight of members who do not know where they should belong. They are like children who are made to choose between dad or mom in an awful separation and divorce situation. I appealed to both groups to allow these members to move from one group to the other and not force them to take sides until these members are ready. I even raised the possibility that this might take YEARS.I SUGGESTED TO FRANK PADILLA'S GROUP THAT AT SOME POINT I WILL BE BRINGING THE LEADERS OF THE TWO GROUPS TO A COVENANT AGREEMENT THAT WILL EASE SOME OF THE DIFFICULTIES OF SEPARATION AND PROMOTE PEACEFUL COEXISTENCE IN THE ARCHDIOCESE OF TORONTO.I WAS WAITING FOR RICKY CUENCA TO COME BACK FROM THE PASTORAL CONGRESS IN MANILA.I trust that these points will HELP correct the misinformation out there.Fr. Mark Villanueva