Sunday, May 18, 2008

Voices of Faith and Reason

Retired Bishop Franciso Claver, in a lucid and inspiring essay written for the CBCP Monitor gives his take on the FFL's over-emphasis on "veering away".

(to steal or not to steal from him?)
By: Francisco F. Claver, SJ
Reprinted with permission from the CBCP Monitor Vol.12 No.10
May 12-25, 2008 Page A4

I was home in Bontoc recently, and as I was leaving the parish church after Mass the last day of my visit, one of the parishioners rather rudely accosted me with this question:

“Is it at all allowed to steal from the devil?”

“Daft!” I said to myself. I stole a look at my interrogator-it was “the village philosopher”. I thought he was trying to be funny, but he looked serious. Like the Sphinx, in fact. And inscrutable too. So I decided to play along and questioned him in turn, “Why do you ask that?”

He answered: “Because you priests - pardon my impertinence, your Excellency! - say it would not be a sin to steal under certain circumstances, for example, if I were starving and the only way I could survive were to steal the food I needed.” I replied: “You're right. But why the devil?” “Because,” he came right back, “he is the one who has the ready means in the casus conscientiae [a conscience problem under discussion by moralists] that's bothering me.” The man even knew Latin.

And he proceeded to complicate his original question with another (he hadn't earned the sobriquet of “philosopher” for nothing): “But suppose the devil freely gives me what I want, so it wouldn't be necessary to steal, can I in good conscience avail of his magnanimity?” His logic was impeccable (though I still have to meet such a devil of magnanimity), so I answered: “Yes!” This, grudgingly. And not a little testily: “But what are you getting at anyway with all those hypothetical questions?” “They're not at all hypothetical,” he shot back. And he explained how he was a CfC member of the parish and the split between the group of Mr. Padilla and that of Mr. Meloto was so painful to him and his follow CfC-ers, they didn't know what to make of it. And neither did their pastor. (I learned later, though, that they had decided to stick with Mr. Meloto.)

He drew a parallel between starving people stealing or freely receiving help from the devil on the one hand, and on the other, the miserably housed in squatter areas in Manila (which, he said, had horrified him no end when he saw what passed for their “houses”), the putative beneficiaries of the donations of a pharmaceutical company manufacturing “sinful” contraceptives. I didn't think the company in question would welcome being classified as the devil, but then it was being criminalized by Mr. Meloto's critics, so I thought the man's comparison was quite apt. He found great difficulty in the reason being advanced to condemn Mr. Meloto's efforts at helping to provide necessary housing for the poor, supposedly, the use of evil means for a good end. That was how receiving money from the pharmaceutical company for Gawad Kalinga projects was being caricatured. And he went on to add in defense of Mr. Meloto that it wasn't as if he, Meloto, were profiting personally from the company's donations.

That exchange occupied my thoughts all the way back to Manila later in the day. The man was right. If people in desperate straits may steal, it doesn't matter from whom they steal, saint or devil although if I were asked, I would most probably counsel stealing from whichever of the two was richer! But if instead of stealing, the severely indigent begged and were given help freely again, does it matter at all if the donor is a saint or the devil himself? If I were asked by the beggars directly, should I tell them to beg from the saint and not from the devil? But of this I'm sure: If the saint were in any way reluctant to help, I'd have no qualms whatsoever about telling them: “Go to the devil!”

All these strange thoughts because of the quarreling heads of the CfC. The split among them is most unfortunate. But whatever the reasons for it, a way must be found for the work of the CfC to go on. And by “the work of the CfC”, I mean what both factions say they are interested in: the spiritual formation of families, the housing of poor ones, these must by all means be done. But where dirt-poor families are concerned, I would put their housing needs before their spiritual ones. As the old Latin dictum has it (it must have been thought up by another village sage), “primum vivere, secundum philosophare - to stay alive comes first, to philosophize [or theologize too?] second.”

I guess more spiritual persons than I will vehemently say nay to that bit of folk wisdom, maintain that the spiritual must come first at all costs before the material. I'll have no trouble agreeing with them in the order of ultimate priorities. But in a situation of dire and immediate need for shelter and food? I'm afraid I'll have to say the physical and the material will have to be attended to first. This is what many of us who work in the Church's social action apostolate have found from painful experience. It is simply not the right thing to do to talk about spiritual matters to people whose empty bellies cry out to be filled. Or whose make-shift, open-to the-elements hovels degrade and make hard the living of their dignity as human beings and as children of the one Father of us all.

The parallel the man made between the desperate need for food and the equally desperate need for shelter came back to me with head-battering force. How spiritual can a family get living over a stinking estero or in one of those under-a-bridge “condos” that are the scandal of Manila? A decent house to bring up a family in, that's an essential, I would think, for ordinary human living and, yes, for ordinary spiritual well-being as well.

Getting direct help from the devil - the thought was most intriguing. And another just as intriguing popped up to mind unbidden: Why should the devil go against his nature and agree to do a good deed? For a human, redeemable “devil”, I thought to myself, it could be out of a desire to make reparation for sins; or simply out of ordinary Filipino awa, something that I would think should come naturally to most of us. But for the real, unredeemed and unredeemable devil? No problem, I concluded: It would be out of sheer malice to wreck havoc on some moral theologian's inflexibly righteous certitudes! I should have asked my Igorot philosopher for his opinionated but, I do not doubt, common-sense verdict?

The real scandal, I further concluded, was not the money gotten from the “devil” of a pharmaceutical firm, but the necessity to welcome it because Christians, the saints, were not being sufficiently forthcoming with their charity.

“I was a stranger and you took me in; I was without a roof and you helped me put one over my head and my family's. Enter into the joy of your Lord.”

And with that bothersome if holy thought, I fell into a fitful, troubled nap.

Note: This was also covered by Mr. William Esposo in his May 18 article in the Philstar.

It is also saved as a PDF and can be downloaded from the "Archived Documents" sidebar on the right, or click HERE.

Considering that the Easter Group has managed to stick their noses in our business and twisted Bishop Reyes' resignation as our spiritual advisor to further their cause (which I pretty much predicted btw). I really would not be suprised if they reply to this and somehow make it appear that Bishop Claver is attacking the church. Take it easy Mr. Contreras, and watch what you say, lest, once again, you do exactly what you are accusing others of. I've noticed that you have started to write the Easter Group's attack mail to deflect attention away from Frank and his increasingly angry e-missives, but don't get too complacent in your new job. With your credibility shot, it won't take long before you do more harm than good for your corporation.

I'm too late, they already did, it seems:

The Devil is the Details

“In a recent release of the CFC Ugnayan Media Center, an article ostensibly from Bishop Claver was reprinted in order to justify, even morally, getting support and aid from the devil in times of dire necessity. In a bit of overextension of the principle of double effect in Theodicy, survival has been pictured as the greater good which must be embraced even if the means coming from the giver is per se, evil.

The whole story sadly misses the point of His Excellency Cardinal Rylko. Rylko's reasons were quite clearly stated that it was necessary for the Church to be absolute in prohibiting any form of partnerships with pharmas because said companies may use this type of compensating philanthropy to precisely justify the use of contraceptives and abortifacients, which is patently opposed to Church teachings. Thus, if said companies make it a point to promote and save lives because of the donations it gives and even if such grants are so huge they can build shelters and cure poor people from the ravages of disease and sickness, the good Bishop would like to make us believe that such good deeds absolve the evils wrought by the killing of millions of unborn children. This compensating philosophy is then reduced to ad absurdum levels by denigrating abortion to merely a philosopher's statement, because one has been able to feed millions as well.

Where lies the difference? Is it a matter of life for life? Does this justify ethnic genocides, family feuds , tribal wars because life is compensated for life? More fundamentally, what if the party whose turn it is to kill subsequently adopts all the children of the victim and clothes them, feeds them, sends them to school? Do these deeds make them the greater and nobler good? Do they wipe out the sins and absolve the sinners?

To reiterate, Cardinal Rylko is sadly misinterpreted here again. It is the actual danger that compensating philanthropy presents that he wishes us to avoid, albeit reject. The devil is in the details of the fallacies we foist and expect our readers to accept without the benefit of context of what is really Cardinal Rylko's point. To subscribe to this notion of compensating philanthrophy is dangerous because put to extremes, it can justify a lot of evil masked as good.

Nonong Contreras
May 17, 2008
Do your thing Nonong, just don't forget to stop by the Caritas office with your burning cross. While you're at it, you might as well hit the nearest confessional and let the priest know that these words came out of your mouth:
I would suspect there is a grand plan to put up a big offensive on the part of the IC after the Arguelles/Tale audience with Rylko. These guys are playing for keeps and ready to spend resources for a final push, starting with the CBCP Monitor and now the Philstar ad. For all the Vatican's naivete, Arguelles and co. did a good PR job and a Rylko reiteration ordering 1 CFC in their favor may not be far in the offing. The CBCP supplement and the Philstar ad are parts of a conditioning job, a transitioning mode perhaps going into a segueway of ordering both camps to reconcile with them having the upperhand. I maybe wrong but the moves are all too familiar to a grand PR offensive, what with IC members traipsing around the world right now.

The key to derailing this is no other than Bishops Gabby, Lagdameo, Villegas and now Cruz. In particular, we went into this with Bishop Gabby and now, because we wanted to abide with the Bishops' wish, we seem to have been left out in the cold. Soc brokered the first ever agreement and even wrote the document about the spin off of GK from CFC. Where is he now? Lagdameo blows hot and cold depending on who he is faced with. Cruz seems to be a lot of hot air with no deliverables yet in sight. These guys better be serious because singly and collectively, the Batangueno prelate seems to have done a far better job than all of them combined. Sabi nga, tumataya si Arguelles at nakatutok and he got results. On the other hand, our Bishops continue to engage in civilities and seem not to be ready to stick by us.They cannot just stay idle twiddling their thumbs and reading tea leaves, albeit smoking pot. We should all know by now that even in the Vatican, they play politics. Unless we are ready to do the big league, let us just be content being what we are and doing our work silently and incrementally.

Sorry for the outrage but it has to be said because we all need to wake up and face realities.

God bless.


Your Bishops, huh. Nice. I didn't know we were playing a team sport like the PBA, complete with recruitment, sidelines, venue manipulation, and a bench. Smoking pot? And you were saying those opinion writers were attacking the Church? Talk about the POT calling the kettle BLACK. To have writers affiliated with CFC draw attention to some inconsistencies in Church policies is one thing, but to have FFL leaders speak about Bishops with such disdain and angst, well...I'm speechless.

To the regular members of the FFL, this is nothing against any of you, but as they say, the Captain goes down with the ship. That doesn't mean the passengers have to learn how to swim as well. With leaders like these, my heart truly goes out to you. Your evangelism is better served with leaders whose intentions are pure. To our friends in the FFL, esp Akosikenn, I am respectfully asking for your thoughts on this.

Their accusations of CFC and GK "veering away" is just becoming tiresome. All it is doing is opening a can of worms that few in the clergy want to touch, considering the subject affects MANY Catholic organizations who are already hard pressed as it is to do their work in caring for the poor. Once again, tho, I wouldn't be suprised if the Easter Group claim that they meant to do that to incite a philosophical/theological discussion on the subject. After what happened in Laguna recently, nothing really surprises me anymore.

To the blogging crew: Thank you for the comments you've left in the other entries related to Bishop Claver's article. I will be trying to transfer them into this one, but if you see that I've missed some, please do me a favor and move them over here. I would like to keep the comments relevant to the subject.

Speaking of relevance, I will be covering what happened in Laguna in another entry. Save your comments for that and I will be moving the other related comments to that entry as well. I think it is HIGH TIME that we started tracking these occurrences and I will need your help. I hope someone was able to get pictures, first hand accounts, and facts from that event. You all know where to reach me.


WillyJ said...

With this recent pronouncement of Bishop Claver, together with the widely known position of the late Cardinal Sin, Cardinal Rosales and Bishop Iniguez, we may conclude that the controversy on "tainted donations" revolves around the ethical principle of "double-effect". One one side, we have the licit morality of helping the poor, and on the other side, we have the immoral act of causing scandal. In the case of GK, this scandal has been defined by Cardinal Rylko in his response to a previous query by Bishop Reyes that "Accepting such funding creates confusion among the faithful, as they give the impression that abortion, and the production, distribution, and use of contraceptives and abortifacients are acceptable practices".

The fourth condition of the principle of double-effect, which states that "The good effect must be sufficiently desirable to compensate for the allowing of the bad effect" now comes into play. The question may now be framed in this manner: Does lifting thousands of poor families from abject poverty compensate for creating possible confusion among the faithful on the morality of contraceptives? While pondering this question, one must validly inject known facts about the issue at hand. Which side is more grounded on realities, and which side is more grounded with hypothetical projections.

I guess the only reasonable way to effectively answer this question is to personally investigate the matter at ground zero. Visit the actual GK sites; look around; observe the environment; observe the volunteers; interview the beneficiaries and determine what's really going on. Did GK help these poorest of the poor materially and spiritually? Can we count these beneficiaries so far? Are there a lot of "confused" people at the GK sites? Can we count them so far likewise? Granting there are confused people, were they confused precisely because GK accepted funds from "tainted sources"? Are these people even aware of these issues? May we now ask - when the final authority involved decides one way or the other, what should finally be done in this controversy - who will be the most affected: the donors? the clergy? the columnists? the GK volunteers? the GK detractors? I certainly suppose not. It will be the poor themselves who stand to be most affected, and unfortunately enough, they don't even have a voice in this whole controversy.

Someone's a Detailer said...

CD, just as you predict Mr. Contreras will write something about the Bishop Claver article, well let me tell you,
he already did.

Its entitled "The Devil is in the Details". I think I saw it it in the CBCP news -- as a commentary on a news on Bishop Claver about justice, etc. by a reader.

Yes, I think you are right... Contreras is becoming 'The F(l)ounder's defender.

And I hate what they did to CFC Laguna!

Pro Jesuit na ako, goodbye Frank! said...


CFC has a new defender in Bishop Claver, SJ!

Please read his article about stealing from the devil to help the runs contrary (sounds contre-ras!!) to the scandal we are accused of, that of partnering with the phrma companies..

Galing ng mga pareng jesuita, hindi na ito puedeng ibaliwala ni Founder Frank and his sidekick, Oscar Contrary.

Palagay na-buko na namandito ang Church.

sigue read nyo na muna.

Let's pray we'll have more Bishop Claver in the Clergy.

jonitanitayturin said...


A retired Bishop, Father Claver's is, I think, the unmistakably clearest voice and the most lucid explanation we can thankfully count on in our time of crisis! Let those who’ve equivocated about accepting possible “tainted” donations for flashflood-stricken residents of Brooksides now sleep soundly. Thank you, dear Bishop Francisco Claver, S.J. for providing us a decidedly good breathing space that was denied by the intolerant and bigoted opinions of Padilla, Bishop Reyes, and their cohorts (may they soften their individual and collective positions now...)

May I also honor the good Bishop Claver for that fact that his easy prose has plowed very deeply into Reason. I recall the key-informant technique he so expertly used to give an insight into the ethnography and ethnology of the indigenous people in San Fernando as his masters thesis in cultural anthropology, while performing the role of Bishop of the Diocese of Malaybalay, Bukidnon way back then. During those years, Father Claver’s solid voice also gave clear direction to the flock governed by the martial dictatorship of the Marcoses.

I give this, my piece, a momentary rest or breather, as I suspect there’ll be another Shepherd’s Voice, coming too…

I am simply amazed and in reverence at the thought that those clerics who have somehow been connected with the Jesuit special mission that is Bukidnon, have provided the CFC faithful (the one who have aligned with the group Vatican ruled would have exclusive use of the name CFC) clearer voices as shepherds.

There’s the fatherly Bishop of Malaybalay City, His Excellency Monsignor Honesto Pacana, S.J. who provided the venue last year for the Holy Retreat of all the CFC leaders in Mindanao and the representatives of the CFC-IC, where he unequivocally asserted that as Bishop, he couldn’t be bothered any less to charge disobedience if any lay organization under him followed its own administrative statutes even if these were contrary to his recommendations.

Then last month, there was the reclusive Father Savio Siccuan, prior/administrator of the Benedictine Monstery of Transfiguration in Malaybalay who asserted that CFC and GK are obedient to Mother Church, after personally going out of his cloistered life to verify the reality of GK during the one-week Bayani Challenge.

And now, the respectable Monsignor Francisco Claver, S.J. former Bishop of the Diocese of Malaybalay…

We understand that the good Vicar of Christ in Manila, His Eminence Julio Card. Rosales successfully stood his ground in support of those who fought the continued denudation of Bukidnon forests while he, too, was Bishop of the Diocese of Malaybalay. We know that in time we will also hear his shepherd’s call on the CFC crisis that has unfortunately scandalized Mother Church…


Anonymous said...

Regarding Cardinal Rosales, this is what he said last March 2008:

"there's nothing wrong with accepting donations, regardless of who the donor is"

"If donations go into private pocket, then that would be bad. But if the donation will go to the poor, there’s nothing wrong with that, no matter where it came from"

Bishop Deogracias IƱiguez also said:

"Let's not begrudge the donation, at least it will go to help people,"

That was according to a CBCP article here:

Thank God we also have very reasonable bishops.

Anonymous said...


"Petromax" was a lowland technology introduced to the tribal highlanders of Bukidnon which was a curious term mentioned in the detailed account of the life of a "native" Manobo that provided a "window" to acculturation, which was one of the major themes in your anthropological studies as the new Bishop of Bukidnon then.

Now, you are our symbol of light, our "petromax", dear Bishop, who illuminates our way in this dark corner that our own Spiritual Director led us into only to hastily leave with contempt. May he and all the rest who have twisted the circumstances to condemn CFC-IC into this dark area also see and be guided by your light, too. God Bless you, dear Monsignor.

miniongCFC said...

The questions on accepting donations from "sinful" donors and the so-called "over-emphasis on social work" were both answered in Bishop Claver's article.

Tuloy ang trabaho mga bro.

God bless us all.

Anonymous said...

Dear Brothers & Sisters in CFC & FFL,

I still have the CD of the talk of Bro. Frank Padilla during the ECG last December 19, 2003 in titled; WORK WITH THE POOR: At the Heart of CFC Evangelization.

CD, palagay ko marami sa ating mga brothers hindi naka bili nito..paki lagay mo nga dito sa blog para makita ng marami at maintidihan nila lalo na sa mga lumipat sa FFL..yan lang..

Happy Feast of the Holy Trinity! Nag pista kaming mga CFC dito sa L.A. ngayon! Kain tayo!

God bless us all!

malachi3/widows might said...

Somehow I would want to rejoice at the actions of Mr. Contreras,his reactions and discussions have led to columnists defending CFC and GK. And now this very clear reflection of Bishop Claver. Eventually,hopefuly those who transferred to FFL will see through what's inspiring our brother Nonong and other leaders in FFL,definitely its not the Holy Spirit.Even Bishop Gabby Reyes seem to have given up on them. The FFL members should be more discerning and see how there leaders are conducting themselves. See the true picture by investigating what happened in Laguna and ask themselves if they can live with this. Move on FFL brothers and sisters. Please stop putting labels on our clergy and Bishops. Please research on the life of Bishop Claver before you pass judgement on him.

Anonymous said...

Bro Willyj:

A slight correction lang:

The treatise of Bishop Claver shows that the poor have a voice in him in this whole controversy. Likewise, the poor have a voice in all the bloggers / in fact in the whole of CFC, who have put a strong defense for Gawad Kalinga.

I agree with you on the rest, particularly on the need to validate the conclusions implied in the query that Bishop Gabby raised with Cardinal Rylko (by the way, how can we have access to the full text of that query?).

Yes, perhaps let Padilla, Contreras et al invest in a small amount to do a credible research to gather facts on the ground; let them start with supporting and validating their statement/s with ground data...I am agreeable to a pharma-sponsored survey or study on this matter if they so desire. Dapat kasi, Padilla, Contreras et al must present the facts (using an inductive process, that is, and not the questionable premises deduced illicitly from illogical propositions) since they are the accusers...At the end of a survey, we may have a panel to review the conclusions and recommendations.

Meantime that such field data are gathered, let's address such gut issues as FFL stealing a CFC venue, or else FFL purposely preventing the conspicuous display of a CFC streamer pointing to a new venue following an FFL-induced confusion thereon (this is PURELY EVIL in the man!!!).

Bro. Mero :-) said...

Hi to all,

Bishop Claver's artice was truly inspiring and affirming! I have nothing more to say on this. The good bishop covered it well.

I just want to ask our CFC volunteers from GK, isn't it that Frank released some guidelines on receiving tainted funds? I think that was sometime in 2003 or 2004.

Can someone (who has a copy)post it here too, ?

God bless!

Bro. Mero :-)

WillyJ said...

The absurdities in Nonong's statements are breathtaking:

"...the good Bishop would like to make us believe that such good deeds absolve the evils wrought by the killing of millions of unborn subscribe to this notion of compensating philanthrophy is dangerous because put to extremes, it can justify a lot of evil masked as good."

Nonong, accepting donations from pharma companies for the poor wroughts "killing of millions of unborn children"? The act in question here is about accepting donations, please relate that to the effect of "killing millions of unborn children".
I know you must understand the concepts of mediate, unintended, remote, indirect, and objective facts. You do however appear to understand the concept of seriously proportionate reasons, since you yourself have stretched it to ridiculous extremes.

We know of course that contraceptives and abortifacients are "patently opposed to Church teachings". Whoever here says otherwise? Again, examine the ethical principle if by any stretch of the imagination you see any shred of evidence that GK shares the contraceptive mentality. While you talk about Church teachings, do we doubt for a moment that work with the poor is unified and integral with evangelization? It has been taught since day one that faith without works is dead.

Thus the apostle James in 2:15 says: "If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of
you says to them 'Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well', but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it"?

FFL could be a LOVELY INCREMENTAL if said...

“Unless we are ready to do the big league, let us just be content being what we are and doing our work silently and incrementally” -- superior wisdom from FFL’s Nonong Contreras.

This is one statement that Mr. Contreras that I totally agree on.

Move on FFL, do the real hard work and follow your charism. You were called to evangelize, but when you do it please ensure that decency, honesty and courtesy are hallmarks of your effort and by this I mean FFL should not do the following;

1.Steal the venue of activities by CFC – if they CFC reserved the venue, let CFC use it and do your thing another day on the same venue if you wish.
2.Celebrate your Anniversaries correctly because when your grand children grow up to have their own mind, they will ask you abut discrepancies in your organization date – let us have no mistake about it, when was in the year 2007! – and you do not like to be embarrassed and force yourself to lie. Remember a lie today breeds another lie in the future.
3.Steal or poach on CFC’s membership – tigilan na ninyo ito, nagiging laughing stock na kayo na mga miembro ng CFC and the discerning members of the Clergy who already know your dirty tricks (and laundry!)
4.Liberate the Bishops, (from Cantillas to Villegas and everyone in between with special mention to Bishop Reyes) whom you have “used” to further your cause. They have a bigger responsibility to God and the Church, instead of just being your pawns (as you imply, they are yours)
5.Respect your former brothers in the CFC IC, let them do their thing. You had your time doing yours in CFC for most of the 25 years. Build your fiefdoms in FFL. CFC is a ground that is no longer yours as a mission field and most of its members really do not like to have you back anymore. Names of former leaders now in FFL WILL JUST BE A MEMORY FOR MOST OF US who have been here for 20 or more years. Refrain from your attacks to help us keep our memory of you pleasant.
6.Give yourselves some rest, its no longer summer so flying kites will no longer be an option – try singing in the rain as it could do you good! And Mr. Contreras, put back the cap on your pen and put it back in side your cabinet. Your writing will do more damage to FFL, and with your last missive about Bishops counting tea leaves (oh I though you are far removed from occult practices?) and smoking pot, I think that is such a reckless charge without basis in fact. Seems you’re getting used to this kind of attack. I suggest you back off from doing that.

And oh yes, it will take time to be able to join the BIG LEAGUE!

Anonymous said...

i've known and seen Bishop Claver's works in Bukidnon, and with the poor.

i've also "seen" Nonong Contreras' "work" with the poor.

Geez! What a contrast! i wouldn't describe the works of Bishop Claver. you can just go to bukidnon and ask.

But of Mr. Contreras? maybe you can just go and ask the workers in the GK sites or even go ask some CFC people. Mr. Contreras' "works" are the works of the *miron* --- yun nagmamarunong, yun reklamador, yun dada ng dada pero wala namang ginawa, yung di naman nagtrabaho kasama ang mga mahirap.

WillyJ said...

To Anonymous of May 19, 2008 6:45 AM:

Yes, you are right. My apologies to the many voices of Faith and Reason.
It is just a great pity that the prominent personalities among the GK detractors did not bother to validate their armchair philosophy by doing a reality check: Simply talk with the thousands of GK beneficiaries and their dependents. What GK really means to these people - straight from the horses mouth.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Nonong Contreras and his group talk and act like THEY OWN THE CHURCH and THEY OWN THE BISHOPS! they would like to project that they are the VOICE of the church and the speak what the church wants to say!

are they on drugs or something?

Did he Detail the Devil? said...


THE AUTHOR OF THE ARTICLE "THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAILS - a Mr. Nonong Contreras - ATTACKS THE CHURCH, in his rage and frustration.


1. “The key to derailing this is no other than Bishops Gabby, Lagdameo, Villegas and now Cruz.”
So there is bad plot that they really are all out To derail CFC using the aforementioned Bishops (kawawa naman sila)!

2. “In particular, we went into this with Bishop Gabby and now….”
Nakita ninyo na! Bad Plot din talaga yung pagiging SD ni Bishop Reyes sa CFC kasi ka team mate na pala siya ni Coach Frank at ang superstar player na Nonong C mula sa umpisa. Bistadong-bistado si Bishop, kaya ng resign!

3. “because we wanted to abide with the Bishops' wish…..”
Ows, Bishops wish or your wish? Ayaw na ta ‘nong!

4. “we seem to have been left out in the cold.”
Looks like it is only the Andrewses who are NOT complaining about the cold, okay kasi siguro ang sweldo nila. Lumipat ka doon sa USA, Nonong…baka maging maiinit na rin ditto sa ‘pinas para sa iyo.

5. “Soc brokered the first ever agreement and even wrote the document about the spin off of GK from CFC. Where is he now?”
Wow! Nasaan ka naman Bishop Villegas? Bakit madalas ka bang wala dyan sa puwesto mo sa Bataan Bishop Soc? Bakit hindi mag-report kay Coach Frank? Baka may-ipapasulat ulit na bago sa iyo si Coach Frank eh wala ka naman!

6. “Lagdameo blows hot and cold depending on who he is faced with.”
OO Nga, kainis ka naman Bishop, diba hindi tayo masyado pro–GK, eh bakit napipintura ka ng bahay sa GK. Sana dito lang tayo! Baka sabihin ng mga kakampi natin sa FFL eh, evangelization DIN pala ang GK, may Bishop pa! Maling exposure yun Bishop, dito ka lang sa ‘goal’ natin’ mag shoot ng bola!

7. “Cruz seems to be a lot of hot air with no deliverables yet in sight.”
Oo, sorry daw NonoNg, nabusy lang daw ng kaunti Bishop Cruz, kasi ina-abala siya ng Secretary of Justice at ng mga magagandang binibini ng PCSO. Hayaan mo daw at sa susunod na homily niya, eh, ikaw naman daw ang kanyang topic para daw sumikat ka na rin tulad ni Frank. Peace daw muna kayo!

8. “These guys better be serious because singly and collectively”
Oo, nga mga Bishops Lagdameo, Villegas, Cruz at lalo na ikaw Bishop Reyes, lets be serious na daw. Dapat FFL na lang muna ang asikasuhin dahil nandito talaga ang truE charism at dito ninyo lang makikita ang “Founder” sa buong buhay ninyo.

9. “the Batangueno prelate seems to have done a far better job than all of them combined. Sabi nga, tumataya si Arguelles at nakatutok and he got results.”
Wow Bishop Ramon A. galing mo! High rating ka kay Nonong Contreras. They wish daw you were in their team kasi galing mo daw mag – man-to-man defense, wala daw makalusot aat maka-iskor!

10. “On the other hand, our Bishops continue to engage in civilities and seem not to be ready to stick by us.”
Oo nga, mga Bishops Bakit puro ‘civilities’ naman kayo, akala ko noong umpisa eh gagawin natin na lahat ng CFC, puwera si Tale at lahat ng mga JOSE AT HINDI JOSE sa Council, ay gagawin nating FFL. Ehbakit ngayon ang lakas lakas ulit nila. Hindi ninyo yata gina-gwardiyahan. How dissapointing naman! Teka, Nonong, di kaya mali na ang pandikit na ginagamit ni Frank at ikaw...baka madalas ninyo pagalitan ang mga Bishops ninyo, baka nagtampo!

11. “They cannot just stay idle twiddling their thumbs and reading tea leaves, albeit smoking pot.”
Hoy, mga Bishops, galit na talaga ako ha! Bakit naman parang kayong mga bata - sabi ni Nonong! At ano bayan, mga Bishops pa naman kayo tapos nanini-garilyo kayo ng marijuana! At ano ba yang palangana na may tubig at dahon dyan ha?

12. “We should all know by now that even in the Vatican, they play politics”
Ibig mo sabihin Nonong, yung pinoy politician naka influensya na rin sa Vatican? Kelan ba papalitan si Pope, matulungan kaya ng FFL ang pagiging Pope ni Bishop Reyes? Ay, sorry sabi mo nga pala, lets be serious!

13. “Unless we are ready to do the big league, let us just be content being what we are and doing our work silently and incrementally.”
This is the only GOD INSPIRED statement here!

14. “Sorry for the outrage but it has to be said because we all need to wake up and face realities.”

Oo nga, wake up talaga Nonong! Palit strategy muna…mukhang strategy with Bishops will not work. Caucus ulit kayo nila Oca, Roland, Oland, Pancho at nila Billy, tapos report kayo ng bagong position paper kay Founder. Suggestion, do not write when you are in a rage.

14. “God bless”
God will bless you and FFL more if you present your apology to the Bishops and to CFC for the ‘scandal’ you caused the Church with this bad e-mail.


Anonymous said...

Tama Ka, Brother Willyj!

Warning lang kay Brother Nonong Contrerars, dahil sinabi na doon sa nag-comment sa CBCP news tungkol sa pag-resign ni Bishop Gabby, adressed sa mga taga-FFL at CFC na kung minsan ay sobrang "atatat" or overeager: hinayhinay lang sa paglalakad, kasi medyo malalim-lalim sa mi unahan; baka mapasubo sila.

Sige nga, get your premises and, sabihin natin, mga assumptions objectively correct para tuloy-tuloy na tayo.

Let's start with the object of KNIFE, Nonong Contreras. Is a KNIFE GOOD OR BAD? Is it murderous?

Well, until you yourself seek out the specific product (of a pharma company, for instance) that kills, and/or use it to kill, that same product is harmeless and the company producing it may not be faulted for any murder at all. In contrast, 'Nong Contreras, for as long as you use the KNIFE only for kitchen purposes to cook your food, that knife cannot be murderous, too.

So, must the knife be made at all? Or must the maker be faulted for its being potentially murderous?

Elementary lesson muna ito, Mister graduate of a management school (perhaps?)

You may not say that receiving a donation from a pharma company that produces contraceptives will have made one a holder of the "murderous knife" or instrument that is blamed for killing millions of unborn children. May pag-ka senior elementary grade ang required sa utak ng pangalawang proposition na ito, pero, ok lang, Brod Contreras. Kaya mo pa rin seguro 'to. Ang hamon talaga sa utak dito, ay ang pangangatuwiran (justification)of the extent of your cooperation or participation in a sinful act, and more especially the responsibility of thinking correctly and scientifically.

Ang importante lang talaga, Brod, is that in your Philo 101, sa colehiyo na naman pati: Syllogism is the art and science of correct thinking. Please brush up on it.

No offense meant, Brod. Just a firm advise that is reinforced with a good piece of stick for emphasis, as in the elementary grades. Sorry, we have no carrots today, our dear(est? unBi-)boy.

Anonymous said...

May tanong po ako kay tito nonong...

Kung may isang exec ng isang pharma company na magdodonate sa "restoration Village" nila, tatanggapin nyo kaya ito? Why or why not?

Take note tito, hindi galing sa pharma company ang pera pero sumusweldo sya sa company. Tingin nyo po?

Anonymous said...


Read more about comments to Bishops on Nonong Contreras.
Go to:

Danny, WB said...

Dear Lord,

Please bless...

His Excellency
Nonong "The Cardinal Dude" Contreras

As his he leads "His Bishops" into derailment.


Anonymous said...

Brothers & Sisters in CFC!

Remember the B.O.M.B.?
(Bring Old Members Back!)

I am sure we now have a good reason why some of our old (not necessarily in terms of age) friends who moved to FFL could be persuaded to back to our households, units, chapters, sectors, provinces or countries!

All we need to say is the real attack on the Church is coming from all of the plotting, mis-leading, then insulting that supposed elders or SERVANTS of FFL do to the Bishops.

Bishops Lagdameo and Bishop Villegas, you were just accused of thumb-twiddling and smoking pot, please request Nonong Contreras to come to confession and then INSTRUCT HIM TO WRITE A LETTER OF APOLOGY to the Philippine Catholic church for such un-charitable, sinful, demonic act of calling you names!

WE appeal to FFL members who do not like or subscribe to the increasing dirty tactics of spin writer Mr. Nonong Contreras to come back to CFC's fold. You will be correctly mentored here ... then let us go together to the CLPS, YOUTH CAMPS, ILCs, 'Disciples Weekend' then see for yourselves the lie that was given to you - that we have no evangelization or spiritual life here.

Here's a little caveat, though, please pardon but I think not all of us are ready to accept all of you back.

(Sgd) CFC Household Head

t2mc said...

"On the other hand, our Bishops continue to engage in civilities and seem not to be ready to stick by us.They cannot just stay idle twiddling their thumbs and reading tea leaves, albeit smoking pot. We should all know by now that even in the Vatican, they play politics. Unless we are ready to do the big league, let us just be content being what we are and doing our work silently and incrementally."

This statement is a pittance compared to all other fiery statements being issued.

Ahh!How sad. It reminds me of a line in Macbeth:

Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

It seems that there is a realization among the bishops that there are two truths being peddled to them - one which is purely subjective (FFL's) and one that is objective (CFC's).

Which of the two version will survive?

Indeed, which that is right will survive.

Bro. Waray said...

Brothers and Sisters,
For sure, we will encounter more of Brother N. Contrary's (un)literary pieces in the future. For me, the best thing to do after reading one is to smile, forget all about it (kay waray man kita mahimo na kan nonong) and most importantly pray for our brothers and sisters in FFL for enlightenment. They deserve better shepherding. They can join other Catholic communities such as Focalore or Bro. Bo Sanchez to sustain their spiritual nourishment. However, if our FFL brothers will decide to rejoin the one and only CFC, then we will lovingly welcome you with open arms. The whole CFC community will rejoice!
God bless.

Anonymous said...

Pagpasensiyahan niyo na po ang FFL. Spinning words, spreading lies, misleading people, using Bishops, and stealing CFC venues are their "joys in Christ".

Danny, WB said...

Today's (Mon, 19 May 2008) 1st Reading

From James 3:13-18

Who among you is wise and understanding? Let him show his works by a good life in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. Wisdom of this kind does not come down from above but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace
for those who cultivate peace.

solidyfc said...

T2s, just a thought

Before the split, they told us that the BISHOPS, are our "PASTORAL FATHERS" and we should FOLLOW THEIR DIRECTION.

They even accused us of maligning the BISHOPS for our own good, by telling that "probably" Bishop Gabby is in their side

Pero sila??? they can accuse the BISHOPS, and EVEN the VATICAN of POLITICING!, wow...baka sunod niyan


Baka un na ung susunod na issue diyan!!!, wag tau matawa bros and sisters...satan is what he has done to our community.

Just keep our defesnes while Moving forward dba ;)

GBU all

PS...Mabait ang comment sila for now!!! ahahha

Anonymous said...

To FFL Leaders who read this blog:
Please lang "rendahan" ninyo si Nonong. He needs your pastoral care.
From a concerned CFC member
(THE real CFC)

Aynaku said...

I can only hope that Nonong never had his children immunized against German Measles, given that immunization came from deliberately aborted human embryos.

After all, his wisdom seems to overrule what many in the Church say.

This reminds me, I recall seeing FFL documents condemning GK for being invited to and attending the Clinton Global Initiative - an invitation-only event for the world's most effective charitable works.

Why? Well, because the Clintons are not pro-life...they don't mind anti-life practices such as contraception, you see.

All the while, the FFL offices remain financed by the progenitors of the most anti-life legal bill in the Philippines...

Double-standard, anyone?

Double-standard like, for instance, espousing respect for the church while labeling Bishops as blowing hot and cold, all hot air...and sitting twiddling thumbs and smoking pot.

Way to go, Nonong.

Thank you for such a display of the fruit of the Spirit.

Anonymous said...


hehee..natawa ako d2...hayy...we should be more discerning..nabasa ko sa online retreat sa dun..discerning is making a decision between good and better..not goo or bad...aun...sana we could be christian sa lahat ng ginagawa naten...pray mga titos and titas..we will pray for tne ic and cfc as well...God bless...yfc west b, ace

Athrun Atreides said...

CD, please forgive me for asking, but may I know the details of Mr Contreras' statement about them using the bishops, such as when did he write it or to whom was it addressed?

Normally you provide a screen print for most of what comes from him or the Easteristas, such as the one about "exposing them (CFC) as charlatans." I was wondering if you also have a screen print of this statement from Mr Contreras.

Please understand: I do not mean to sow doubt, but it is possible that some might accuse you of putting words into Mr Contreras' mouth.

Thank you and God bless.

solidyfc said...

naku po t2s...ndi na po ako tlaga magugulat

kung sa susunod humiwalay na yan sa catholic church...yan po ung tnatawag na nilang spiritual pride dba? They are always insisting that they are right

rather than staying silent and letting the Holy Spirit to heal us, they are letting Satan to divide us more!!!


solidyfc said...

Titos Got this from Vatican Information service...:) MJust read it...its a neautral document...:)


VATICAN CITY, 17 MAY 2008 (VIS) - The Holy Father today received in audience a group of bishops, participants in a seminar promoted by the Pontifical Council for the Laity to reflect on the question of pastoral solicitude towards ecclesial movements and new communities. The seminar was held from 15 to 17 May at Rocca di Papa near Rome.

"Ecclesial movements and new communities" , said the Pope, "are one of the most important novelties the Holy Spirit has generated in the Church in order to put Vatican Council II into effect. ... Paul VI and John Paul II were able to welcome and discern, to encourage and promote, the unexpected emergence of the new lay groups which, in various and surprising ways, restored vitality, faith and hope to the entire Church".

Although "no small amount of prejudice, resistance and tension has been overcome", said the Holy Father, "there remains the important task of promoting more mature communion among the components of the Church, so that all charisms, while respecting the specific nature of each, may fully and freely contribute to constructing the one Body of Christ".

Pope Benedict then turned to consider the theme of the seminar - "I ask you to reach out to the movements with great love" - an exhortation he himself had addressed to a group of German bishops on their "ad limina" visit in 2006. "Reaching our with great love to movements and new communities" , he said, "impels us to an adequate knowledge of their situation, avoiding superficial impressions and reductive judgements". This helps us to understand that such movements "are not a problem, ... they are a gift from the Lord, a precious resource to enrich the entire Christian community with their charisms".

"Difficulties and misunderstandings on particular points do not justify [an attitude] of closure", said the Pope. And he told the prelates that they must "closely accompany" the movements and new communities "with paternal solicitude" so as to put to good use "the many gifts they bear, gifts we have learned to know and appreciate: their missionary drive, their effective courses of Christian formation, their witness of faithfulness and obedience to the Church, their sensitivity to the needs of the poor, and their wealth of vocations.

ito po baka gamitin ng FFL sa atin

"The authenticity of the new charisms is guaranteed by their willingness to submit to the discernment of ecclesiastical authority", the Holy Father added. In this context he indicated that bishops "must examine and test the charims in order to recognise and evaluate that which is good, true and beautiful, that which contributes to increasing the sanctity of individuals and of the community. And when it is necessary to intervene in order to correct", he concluded, "such interventions must also be expressions of 'great love'".


GBU all :)


solidyfc said...

Although, its a little bit off topic...this story might give a lesson 2 us...:)

One day, the Persian poet, Rumi que Mo'avia, the first of the Omniad caliphs, was sleeping in his palace when he was woken up by a strange man.

' Who are you?' he asked.

'I am Lucifer,' came the reply.

'And what do you want?'

'It is the hour of prayers, and yet you are still asleep.'

Mo'avia was amazed. Why was the Prince of Darkness, who seeks out the souls of men of little faith, reminding him to fulfill his religious duties?

'Remember,' Lucifer explained, 'I was brought up as an angel of light. Despite everything that has happened to me, I cannot forget my origins. A man may travel to Rome or to Jerusalem, but he always carries the values of his own country in his heart. Well, the same thing happens with me. I still love the Creator, who nourished me when I was young and taught me to do good. When I rebelled against Him, it was not because I did not love Him; on the contrary, I loved Him so much that I felt jealous when He created Adam. At that moment, I wanted to defy the Lord, and that was my downfall; nevertheless, I still remember the blessings bestowed on me and hope that, perhaps, by doing good, I can one day return to paradise.'

Mo'avia replied: 'I can't believe what you're saying. You have been responsible for the destruction of many people on earth.'

'Well, you should believe it,' insisted Lucifer. 'Only God can build and destroy, because He is all-powerful. When He created man, He also created, as part of life, desire, vengeance, compassion, and fear. So when you look at the evil around you, don't blame me; I merely reflect back the bad things that happen.'

Mo'avia was sure that something was wrong, and he began to pray desperately to God to enlighten him. He spent the whole night talking and arguing with Lucifer; but despite the brilliant arguments he heard, he remained unconvinced.

When day was dawning, Lucifer finally gave in and said:
'You're right. When I came yesterday to wake you up so that you would not miss the hour of prayer, my intention was not to bring you closer to the Divine Light. I knew that if you failed to fulfill your obligations, you would feel profoundly sad and, over the next few days, would pray with twice the faith, asking forgiveness for having forgotten the correct ritual. In the eyes of God, each one of those prayers made with love and repentance would be equivalent to two hundred prayers said in an ordinary, automatic way. You would end up more purified and more inspired; God would love you more; and I would be still further from your soul.'

Lucifer vanished, and an angel of light took his place: 'Never forget today's lesson,' the angel said to Mo'avia.

'Sometimes evil comes disguised as an emissary of good, but its real intention is to cause more destruction.'

On that day, and the days that followed, Mo'avia prayed with repentance, compassion, and faith. His prayers were heard a thousand times by God.

Dante said...

Haay, Nonong, I thought kayo ang defenders ng Church against the attacks of the "New Agers" and opinion writers.

In the first place si FAP and nag drag sa simbahan sa gulo na ito, do ba? Siya and nandawit kay Bishops Gaby Reyes, Soc Villegas and Lagdameo. Siya pa nga ang nag sulong kay Bishop Soc na sumulat kung paano i-break away ang GK from CFC. Napadala lang sa maling Gerry. Napadala kay Gerry ng Pfizer kaya nabuking! Kaya siguro sobra ang galit ni FAP kay Pfizer.

Si FAP rin and nagsumbong sa Vatican about the so-called veering away of GK kaya nga piniliy ng Cardinal Rylko na mag-apologize si JT for a scandal na hindi naman natin alam kung sino ang na-scandalized! Si FAP and nandawit sa Vatican kaya nga umarangkada ang mga opinion writers to defend GK against the "pharisees" daw.

At dumating sa punto na FAP says he is the defender of the Church! Pagkatapos niyang idamay, eh heto, i-dedefend naman niya. Haaay!....

And now, FAP's lieutenant, Nonong shoots down the bishops whom he suspects of "tweedling their thumbs" and even possibly smoking pot while the war is going on. Sa Afghanistan or Iraq, ang tawag sa nangyari sa mga bishops eh tinatawag ng mga Amerkano na "killed by friendly fire". Nonoing, you just shot your bishops with your uncontrolled outburst! You should not do that my friend. Even if you are now in FFL. Inamin mo na ka-plot ninyo ang mga obispo. You suggested na Vatican is politicized. You suggested that the bishops are "your bishops" pero walang ginagawa! You admitted now that Bishop Soc wanted the split of GK from CFC. Naku, ha?


West C Still said...

With the likes of the Charismatic Founder and Nonong, the Contrary in FFL, we in CFC must rejoice that they are there and not with us.

They keep amusing me with their dissertations and spins. Sad to see them go this way! I admired them before. I can't say that now.

Oca, M.D. said...

For those who may not fully understand willyj's comments on the principle of double-effect, may I shed a little light on the subject. (I have been a student of ethics and continue to help students in their quest to become ethical doctors in the future.)


B. The DOUBLE EFFECTS are - 1. Good effect - being able to help the poor in the GK villages
2. Bad effect - scandal is caused among the people who might be confused as to whether they should support contraception since GK accepts money from manufacturers

C. The PRINCIPLE - The following conditions must be met:

1. The directly intended act must not be contradictory to our fundamental commitment to God and neighbor

2. The object or intention of the act must be the good effect (morally good)and not the bad effect

3. The good effect must be greater or at least equal to the foreseen bad effect

4. The good effect must come directly as a result of the action and not as a result only of the bad effect. The good effect must not be a result only of the bad effect.

Now, that should help everyone (including the harshest critics of GK and CFC) in figuring out the morality of "receiving money from tainted sources."

Anonymous said...

i just realized d last sentence of nonong's letter was "we all need to wake up and face realities"-
so they have been dreaming all along! Is it a personal realization nonong is sharing with his comunity?
has he awaken to the stark reality that they are not doing things right?

also he said "unless we are ready to do the big league, let us just be content being what we are..."
is nonong dissatisfied with how they are playing the game? it may not be how he is used to play...
he has alwyas played bigtime, big budget, with big wigs... ayala, globe. our poor brother, he gave so much and he now feels left out in the cold. let us pray for him, he used to be my household head , i feel sad for everything that has happened to him and the things he has been saying.

its an authentic nonong contreras message said...

i think the nonong contreras magnum opus (albeit negative)is authentic. the language used is classic nonong. remember when he gives talks, the fun he tries to elicit with a word like "enthu-SIAM", meaning enthusiasm! Nonong na nonong yan.

kaya hindi ako nagulat reading "being idle", "twiddling thumbs", "reading tea leaves", etc. These terms would be applicable to a group of non-performing employees of a corporation's labor force. makes me recall that nonong contreras was an HUMAN RESOURCE executive at a big bank before. so nasanay sa ganoong mga salita.

That's the problem when keep looking at people as your "employees" who are totally dependent on you for their life, i.e. source of strength via the income they receive being employed by you -- you tend to forget to deal with them with charity and compassion, sometimes.

the problem i think with those who write for ffl, is that there is to much anger coming out of their walk and talk. Is it perhaps because of the looming failure to get the CFC name? {sorry sabi nga pala ni Cardinal Rylko, no one can use the CFC name! So failure na talaga!)

yes, i guess it is that! for what else did nonong mean when he stated that 'their bishops are idle'?

so pressure must really be on them. these un-kind, un-charitable, demeaning, devilish details acts/word would not come from a nonong contreras who was a member of cfc. look what ffl membership can do to a man! similarly we also could see some frustration and anger in ffl's fap. if you doubt that, ask jerome paler for a photo of the recent encounter in leyte!

so let's keep praying brothers. the ffl leaders are God's sons and daughters too so lets us keep praying for them.

lets pray that in accordance with our teachings, nonong will find humility in his heart and apologize for the unkind words he wrote to describe Bishops Reyes, Lagdameo Cruz and Villegas, so that this SCANDAL IN THE PHILIPPINE CHURCH will be laid to rest.

let's pray too that ffl will realize the insanity of their on-going charge on CFC and for them to stop it and be focused on the supposed charism they claim they have sole possession of...and to prove it to God that such charism is really meant for God and His Glory, else ffl will continue to be a noisy cymbal!

Danny, West B said...

When the Council told us to "Be Still", I asked the Lord in my prayers:

"Lord, who then will defend the Real CFC if we keep still?"

And now, the Lord talked to me and answered:

"Nonong Contreras will defend you." :)

Thank you Lord!

Do not Twiddle Thumbs in Nonong's Presence said...


The article "The Devil is the Details" gives me an inkling that he or ffl intends to portray us, CFC, in a bad light before Cardinal Rylko.

To sustain his point, he says that Bishop Claver misinterpreted Cardinal Rylko. The Cardinal did not like us to have partnerships with pharmaceutical companies, but the Bishop says that it need not matter where your help comes from when you help the poor.

So si nonong, nagpapa-pogi kay Rylko. Kaya lang nawalan ng saysay ang lahat ng efforts niya noong nagpatalo siya doon sa personal urge niya 'to give his bishops the needle'!

so God allowed us to see this 'twiddling thumb' e-mail so we will know the spirit to avoid when we hear of things that do not come out from the Holy Spirit! Kahit na pa ito ay galing sa dating kapatid sa CFC, pero kapatid pa rin sa Diyos.

EB-3C said...

CD and fellow brethen,

With all these confusions. chaos and fraternity war, i think it is now high time for our elders or the IC to act (if there is none yet) and make a position paper addressed to all bishops who gave the recognition to FFL to affix CFC to their name. We have to emphasize that this recognition or approval to affix CFC have caused so much trouble not only to the original CFC but also to the Church. A glaring case is the use of venue. (Correct me if I am wrong) We made reservation at Teachers' Camp (TC)for Disciples Weekend last January. Then after all had been drawn up, FFL deftly maneuvered the admin of TC to think that they (FFL) were the righteous entity thus their down payment were accepted - result, we were out in the cold looking for another venue. Another case is the Laguna Weekend.

Also during the conduct of CLP. A lot of CFC CLP teams were dismayed because their participants were misled and ended up attendfing FFL's CLS

So there is no truth to the pronouncement of the authority granting the use of CFC that it (FFL can affix CFC)will be for the benefit of both groups (it is one sided favor). I admired Fr. Anton for his Solomonic decision in a similar case wherein he disallowed the use of an existing name to a splinter group.


Lesson on Tasseography said...

Teka, let's take muna an elementary lesson on what 'tea-leaf reading' is all about.

Here's what Wikipedia has:

"Tasseography (also known as tasseomancy or tassology) is a divination or fortune-telling method that interprets patterns in tea leaves, coffee grounds, or wine sediments."

"The terms derive from the French word tasse (cup), which in turn derives from the Arabic tassa (cup), and the Greek suffixes -graph, -logy, and -mancy (divination)."

Okay, so Nonong implies that the Bishops do not actually take their tea in those commercial soluble forms, because it is not only in the drinking of tea that they derive some pleasure, but actually he nonong further implies that perhaps the bishops draw on some occult's power to make their day.
nonong also implies that reading after boiling the tea leaves, and after drinking the tea, the bishops look for tea leaf patterns at the bottom of their cups. So Nonong implies that they appear to be busy doing nothing -- instead of spending their time helping the cause of fap and ffl.

There is spiritual danger in what nonong implies because can you imagine if the bishop you will hear a homily from, spent some minutes looking for a message at the bottom of his tea cup instead of his bible? Yun ang isa sa mga pinapa-hiwatig ng mensahe ni nonong kaya NAPAKALAKING SCANDALO NITO!

Ewan ko lang kung hanggaang saan tatahimik sila Bishop Lagdameo, Villegas, Cruz, at GABBY REYES dito!

Kung ayaw nila kumibo 'kahit na obvious ng 'veering away from proper Catholic behavior or Christian Faith' ang laman sulat na ito, eh siguro dapat lang may sabihin si Cardinal Rosales.Dapat humingi sila ng public apology kay nonong at ffl! (Note to CD: Will you please highlight this paragraph with text color?)

Pero, ewan ko malapit na rin ako ma-dissapoint sa mga Clergy natin.

Round-Eyed Toddler said...

Brothers and Sisters:

I salute Bishop Claver. May there be more bishops than him, who reflect inwards with us, rather than pontificate.

Anyhow, CD's title for this discussion is "Voices of Faith and Reason." This story, along with its accompanying video, summarizes all my thoughts and feelings about the on-going discussions and I wish to share this with everyone:

A son asked his father, 'Dad, will you take part in a marathon with me?'. The father who, despite having a heart condition, says 'Yes'. They went on to complete the marathon together. Father and son went on to join other marathons, the father always saying 'Yes' to his son's request of going through the race together. One day, the son asked his father, 'Dad, let's join the Ironman together.' To which, his father said 'Yes' too.

For those who don't know, Ironman is the toughest triathlon ever.
The race encompasses three endurance events of a 2.4 mile (3.86 kilometer) ocean swim, followed by a 112 mile (180.2 kilometer) bike ride, and ending with a 26.2 mile (42.195 kilometer) marathon along the coast of the Big Island. Father and son went on to complete the race together.

View this race at.....
http://www.godtube. com/view_ video.php? viewkey=8cf08fac a5dd9ea45513

The story and its accompanying video was sent to me via email. Isn't it touching?

We're like that son on those wheels. It's hard to intellectualize when your heart is oozing with gratitude for all the great lengths God will make to convey his great love for us.

The Round-Eyed Toddler

Bro. C. Tsew said...

Do you think the move of the IC to publish that 'auto-da-fe' of an apology to be premature - now in light of recent pronouncements and opinions coming from some members of the high clergy?

It sure did seem to sound like echoes of the Inquisiton when people were accused of heresy (i.e., veering away, disobedience...) and the burden of proof was put on the accused and not the accuser. (The Roman Catholic Church required the accused to publicly apologize for his sins in atonement as an 'act of faith' or 'auto-da-fe'.)

The thing that bothers me though is that the accusations of Frank Padilla has not been substantiated nor proven up to this day. Before the FFL splintering last year, I heard from Pancho Lopez-Tan in his emotional talk at the Hope Weekend Echo for West C in Baguio, March 2007 that he was heading a group tasked to investigate and look into anomalous practices in GK sites. I wondered then after FAP put out the GK-3 paper if the 18-points were somehow based on findings of the Lopez-Tan task force. (Could there be an extant hardcopy of this report? Did GK know that there was this group tasked to move around GK sites with such function?)

I've always thought that the issues raised in that GK-3 paper were isolated, nitpicky and disproportionately exagerrated. West C had issues in its GK sites but not one of the 18-points of Padillas's GK-3 was applicable. Moreover to my simple thinking, not one issue in that manifesto would have justified the breakaway that eastergroup eventually made. My wife and I always believed that a marriage will never break up as long as both husband and wife fight to save the union. The community broke up because Frank Padilla gave up and justified that "separation" is better in cases such as this.

So, could the IC have jumped the gun in the release of that public apology? You might argue Cardinal Rylko's putting out of the final pronouncement on "the only group named CFC" was specifically hinged (loosely or heavily) on that auto-da-fe. But my problem there is the pain inflicted on brothers and sisters and entities whose only purpose is to take part in God's work in His vineyard. As Joe Tale mentioned, it was painful for him, too.

Deo Volente said...

To the brother wondering if the CFC apology was premature...

I also felt that the IC should not have been obligated to issue the apology since there was no formal fact-finding body to investigate the veracity of the accusations.

However, looking at it from another perspective, I am now in total support and agreement with what the IC did (issuing the apology).

When the Vatican spoke and asked for it, there is no other alternative than to obey. (I was also glad that the IC took the effort in explaining how the mistakes were done in good faith, how it asks difficult questions so that similar problems will not happen in the future, and how it made a sincere promise to correct any problem).

Some of us have probably heard of the "Test of Obedience" sometimes used by the church to confirm what kind of spirit is driving a person or group. Most often this test is introduced even at a point when the other argument is the most reasonable. It is when one overcomes the "need to be victorious in perceived righteousness" and obeys the Church that the Church will know that the person or group is in communion with it, and that it is driven by the right Spirit.

Also see this article:

"... For almost exactly 40 years now dissenters have been putting forth the idea that dissent was somehow an expression of “adult faith” or “thinking for oneself.” The exact opposite is true. In fact, dissent is an adolescent act. Religious obedience, on the other hand, is a matter of great spiritual maturity. Obedience to God is the pinnacle of wisdom. There is no greater expression of maturity than obedience to God. When it comes to faith and morals, the Magisterium is our divine guarantee of freedom from error. There is no other."

I do symphatize with the people who are affected by the decision of cutting off the partnerships. I care of the employees of the pharmaceuticals who will now have a lesser chance to witness by themselves the love that is happening in GK, the love that is the perfect manifestation of Jesus Christ. Some of them will probably feel disenfranchised (turned OFF by GK). Even with their professed sincerity in helping the poor, they will probably feel rejected by the very Christians who used to mingle with tax collectors and Samaritans. We have to do something about them, maybe we can ask the Vatican what the best approach for them will be. They are still souls and it is our duty as their brothers and sisters in Christ (as we have been commanded to love one another) to get them closer to God.

May God bless them. and May God continue to use us as instruments of His Love.

Anonymous said...

Our pastor made an announcement that his associate has been called to study Canon Law, I was amazed the way he made the announcement. He said that our Archbishop Collins, asked permission from our him about his plans for our associate pastor. Filipino bishop will not do that. They will not step down and ask permission from a priest below them. And every time they concelebrate with a priest, nakaupo lang or stay on the side of the altar, hindi sila umuupo sa tabi ng presiding priest. Filipino bishop, dapat sila ang bida.

Anonymous said...

I do not know if most bloggers who read this article of Bishop claver realize that this was not written to make a point for the Couples for Christ present predicament.
This article was not written to make a case against cardinal Rylko.
This article was written by Bishop Claver in his column- CBCP Monitor- May 15 issue.
This article was not written for CFC, neither was it written in the CFC supplement- CBCP Monitor.

Only Bishop Claver can answer why he wrote this article, in the manner that he did, whether he has paused to ponder about all these happening around us.

Lastly, Bishop Claver was not requested, approached, coached or imposed upon by the IC to write this article...

eastergroup particularly nonong contreras, views the good bishop as another "IC ploy"...

ask william esposo, he wrote about this in his column...

better still ask bishop claver, he stays at the ateneo, if i am not mistaken...

as mentioned in the bottom of the artice-

it is reprinted with the permission of CBCP Monitor...

so there, read, ponder, be amused, and reflect...

sometimes even the best brain cells can not manage to comprehend, that which is the easiest, for the simple reason that an angry heart can never understand...

Bro. C. Tsew said...

To Bro. Deo Volente:

I agree that the "Test of Obedience" angle in viewing the issue whether the IC apology is premature or not is "looking at it from another perspective" although you must forgive me if I say I find it quite off-tangent to my point.

The show of humility and readiness to abide by the IC I extol. (Pope John Paul II himself apologized for the wrongs the Mother Church committed in the past.) What I don't buy is that Cardinal Rylko's missive being Magisterium and the point that "the Vatican spoke and asked for it, there is no other alternative than to obey" just because the Cardinal sent that letter from the Vatican. This "disobedience issue" is precisely the beef of Frank Padilla and FFL against the IC and CFC. That part of the "Test of Obedience" article which you gave could well be used to great effect by FAP and his group. I suppose you will agree with me (otherwise we'd be with FFL) that the EA did not defy the Magisterium when it decided not to follow the "strong recommendation" of Bp. Reyes et alia.

But mind you, I think Cardinal Rylko is not wrong in asking for an apology although he, like our local Bishops, remains fallible in matters of faith and morals unlike the Holy Father. I just think I would have preferred and really wanted to see the sins that FAP so readily accused GK has committed be substantiated so that the apology would have made more sense to me. The IC apologized for the scandal but what is equally scandalous to me is to apologize for sin you did not really commit. Like I've said, now we hear sympathetic opinions from some bishops. But that is just me.

Also I appreciate your sympathy for those affected and, yes, there are brothers and sisters who left the community because of "friendly fire". Really sad and painful.

Lastly, I ask the question regarding the possible prematureness of the apology not to cast negative criticism on the action nor doubt the wisdom of the IC. We need to support our anointed leaders. But like our consecrated Princes of the Church, all of us are still error-prone because our wisdom remains human-bound. We continue to pray for divinely-inspired discernment and that His plan and purpose may be accomplished through our actions in this imperfect world.


Anonymous said...


True, there was some divinity in the IC's act of obedience to the Church Magisterium; but I guess that that precisely resulted in a serious review - NOW, that is - of good deeds in the context of ultimate and "less ultimate" priorities; of the realization that some "saints", Christians, have hesitated to give food or shelter to the destitute so that the "human evils" - like perhaps those specific kinds of pharmas (that the Vatican referred to as scandalous), though Bishop Claver himself admits they may contest such reference - have come forward to provide, they whom the Bishop Claver's village philosopher refers to as having "the ready means in the casus conscientiae."

No, Brother Deo, you don't have to be dismissive of the "human devils" such as those specific kinds of pharmas - again, I hope they agree to this categorization for the sake of this discussion only - as if their names are forever damned from rendering righteous works or works of charity in any Catholic social undertaking (Brod Deo, to the point of even convicting (!) their employees simply because they indeed are, I mean - do you mean to say that because they work there they may not be entitled anymore to earn some specks of grace or bits of plenary indulgence just in case they decide to part with hard-earned "pharma-tainted" cash for the poor?! Brod, even the offered prayer for them may be pretentious...).

You don't have to give them a "casus belli" (reason to go to war) for an apparently opinionated argument that hitches on (I wish I have had prior clearance from you on this) feeling "victorious in perceived righteousness."

Just a bit of reminder that an overstep may have been done in the "overconfident thought" that a right one was taken ...

This is a personal sharing only, Brod. Thank you and God Bless.

Anonymous said...

On the other hand,BRO. DEO, I can sense the dilemna that you appear to have placed yourself in trying to make out how to deal with those who, in your mind, will not have further pro-poor collaboration because Vatican commanded so. Therefore, you are also worrying about their attitude towards you which make you worry about their way to salvation themselves......AAARRRGGGHHH!!!

This is sickening...Go get them, those guys who fed Cardinal Rylko with the wrong info!!!

Bro. Mero :-) said...

To Bro. C. Stew and Bro. Deo discussing about whether or not the IC's apology is premature.

I just want to share also my views on this:

Going back to the Philstar Ad it says:
"We sincerely apologize for any scandal that the CFC ladership past or present, may have caused among the faithful with our previous partnership."

This statement (for me) doesn't really an admission that one is guilty of what FFL is accusing of. That's why Frank and the others are not satisfied with the apology because according to them, the IC did this not in conformity with the ecclesiastical authority as instructed by Cardinal Rylko.

To me, the apology statement is very generic, and whether we are guilty or not, it would always put us in a good image-HUMILITY.

When other Bishops appreciate us in what we are doing, we still apologize because we have caused a scandal- a confusion among the faithul. Confusion in what sense? The faithful here refers to our CFC members and the confusion was the opposing pronouncements betwen Frank and Tony. While Frank is so CFCistique, Tony is so patriotic.

For me, these two opposing statements should not supposed to be a confusion but rather a matter of check and balance. While Tony speaks about "ACTION", Frank on the otherhand speaks about "FAITH". What is good of having these two in our leadership structure is the balancing of our life as a Christian. And what is better is because they are good friends and compliments each other.

What i do not understand now, is why they have to separate ways if these issues were already there even before the crisis? Why Frank have to accuse Tony and his comrades of veering away, if he himself was their chairman? Was it because Frank could not anymore chastice them, correct them or admonish them, or maybe control them?

Frank have writtten a lot of books regarding our work in GK, we have:
1. Fullfilling the Mandate
2. 40 Days with the Poor
3. Friend of Foe

and he also wrote some concept paper and guidelines.

1. CFC and GK 1
2. CFC and GK 2
3. Guidelines on receiving tainted money
4. and many other guidelines which some of this were complains of the chapter heads for being overburden of a lot of work. Example of this was, BEFORE: Chapter Head is automatically becomes the GK PD, but NOW: it is not necesarilly.



For every complaint against Tony, Frank is there to defend, and for every "SPRITUAL LAXES" Tony is there to challenge.

Because CFC (thru GK) have gone out of its way and reach out to the poorest of the poor, we gain the highest respect from the general public. One of this they say is; CFC is one of the few organization that is highly respected. And i can add that it was because of our two great leaders, our two towers in CFC.

I am very happy and contented with that set up. The opposing pronouncement woke up not only our conscience but also our hearts. Frank's exhortation awaken our Christian passion, while Tony's exhortation awaken our heroism. What a perfect tandem!

But what happened? Why these two admired leaders who compliments each other before, now defending against each other?

Frank is saying it is not because of Tony. So if it is not because of Tony, why separate Frank?


Are the complaints against Tony is so huge to handle, that Frank needs to choose now whose sides will he listen?

Brothers and sisters, this is the real scandal. The once highly respected organization in the country is now in turmoil. "Walang sisira sa bakal kundi ang sariling kalawang" they say. Walang sisira sa CFC kundi ang CFC din.

Before, when you join CFC, you can say to yourself, "WALA KA NANG HAHANAPIN PA!" Everything is there, from faith, to action, to love, to forgiveness, to piety and etc. Before when we are CFC, we are somebody, because we preach what we practice and we practice what we preach. That was the teaching! Frank preach, Tony acts!
What i mean is, Frank talks about evangelization and Tony speaks about mission!

I do not know how to end this CD, a lot of question boggles in my mind. How can two friends who were bonded genuinely amidst all complaints and issues are now separated by the same complaints and issues.

I ask for all of us to be a source f healing rather than add on to the conflict. I asked Nonong, Boy and the others both CFC and in FFL, let us not fuel the fire.

God bless.

To Bro. Deo, i have a proposal for those who were affected by the termination of partnership. Why not make partnership with Wyeth, Pfizer and Unilab a non monetary one? I mean partnership without accepting funds. Can we do that?

Wyeth, Pfizer, Unilab can still help GK, thru labor force (from their employees, or put up their own GK thru CSR and CFC caretakers will only handle values formation. What i say here, is partnership that has nothing got to do with receiving of funds from these company. I think FFL only question the receiving of funds right? Well, then do not receive the funds, and let these companies handle the funds themselves. But if FFL questions even the willingness of the company to help even without funds then, i can say MAHIRAP NA ITO!

God bless.

Anonymous said...

If I were an FFL member, I'd look into the possibility that my tithe money was part of fund used to pay the nonong contreras advertisement on philippine star yesterday!

My FFL friend did not want me to write this because he beleives that on his own nonong is wealthy enough to pay for it without using FFL's cash. Then he further said that it could the wealthy Padilla, Nillas, Lopez Tan & Contreras who must have paid for it. There are also some wealthy members form their Northern Districts who could have been persuaded by Servant General Frank to contribute for 'a cause'.

Anyway I think they just made the philippine star management, or even columnist william esposo very happy about that particular page sale!

keep it coming nonong!

(Sgd)Star Reader!

Anonymous said...

Mga bloggers, merong po isang kalahati na page sa Philippine Star po kahapon kung saan nakalagay po yung mensahe ng FFl tungkol sa Stairs & Ladders na sulat ni Bro. Nonong Contreras.

Alam ninyo po, sabi ng aking kamag-anak na sanay sa trabho dyan sa mga diaryo, yung daw pong ganoong advertisement ay binabasa lamang noong 1. yung sumulat of author; 2. mga asawa at anak niya; 3. mga kaibigan niya. Ibig sabihin daw po "low readership" kasi unang una para daw nobela sa haba. Dapat daw ang dating parang yung mga advertisement ng kagaya ng mga lumalabas ngayon na advertisement ng Meralco -- maiksi at maliwanag.

Para sa akin naman, eh kawawa naman ang mga eastergroup, biro ninyo libre naman sa internet - na ginawa na nila - eh, ginusto pang gumastos!

Sana ginamit na lang yung pera sa pagpunta sa mision ng kanilang mga misionero!

kung ako si esposo, susulat ulit ako tungkol kay Bro Nonong, para kumita ulit ang diaryo niya.

Mr Conrado Quirol, sumulat ka din para sa Inquirer naman ang advertisement ni nonong!

Desperation Move said...

The advertisement of Nonong Contreras is a sign of desperation!

It is also telling us that the eastergroup is beginning to feel that their e-mail recipients are not reading the messages they are sending.

It is also being used to draw attention to this particular article, so that his e-mail to his cohorts in FFL, about the reading of the tea leaves, smoking pot and being useless -- ACCUSATIONS HE DIRECTLY HURLED IN THE BISHOPS FACES -- be forgotten.

I hope the Church assigns a defender against a misbehaving Catholic and supposed devout, anti-new agers, and FFL Servant Lieutenant like Nonong Contreras!

Anonymous said...

The plot thickens and the discussion deepens.

I know, i know, pinag-uusapan lang naman natin dito.

But why do we still have to listen to Frank and company and the FFL?

It looks like Frank's group is KSP (kulang sa pansin). Maybe the more we talk about their views, the more they love it?

Anonymous said...

I think there are more than enough members of FFL who are thoroughly disgusted over that e-mail of Nonong Contreras calling the Bishops names.

It is a classic mistake, one that will be remembered well in history -- especially nowadays, when technology could archive anything in cyberspace -- that if you were an FFL member, you'd be quick to disown the insane statements made in that e-mail, even the one who wrote is one's Servant Liutenant.

The Servant General Frank Padilla must be spending sleepless nights in Antipolo himself. However he imagines how to come to the rescue of a brother whose image is now quickly disappearing into a quicksand of plain notoriety, I am almost certain it is a LOST CAUSE. can't PUT HUMPTY DUMPTY together again.

If I were Nonong Contreras, instead of that Stair & Ladder article printed on the Philippine Star, it should have been a public apology advertisement directly addressed to their Excellencies Lagdameo, Reyes, Cruz, Villegas -- FFL Bishops whom he insulted, as if being FFL Bishops isn't enough of a mistake itself!

64! And Singing pa! said...

Rumor has it -- nag aaway na sa FFL dahil sa mga maling e-mail ni Nonong.
Nonong's star in FFL (not in the Philippine Star) is fading!

Kawawa naman si NoNONG, few lang ang sasagot ng "YES!" pag kumanta siya sa karaoke ng Beatles song: "Will you Still Love me when I'm 64? (Sorry, hindi yata yung ang Title - 64 na kasi ako, nakalimutan ko!)

Round-Eyed Toddler said...

Bro Deo Volente
Bro Mero
Bro Anonymous 1
Bro Anonymous 2
All others discussing about the apology the IC made

Please allow me to contribute to this discussion as I feel like the premise of the discussion needs closer examination.

To me the facts are:
Fact 1 - The IC apologized as ordered by Cardinal Rylko.
Fact 2 - The IC published the apology in coordination with the good Cardinal.
Fact 3 - The object of the apology is the scandal, not the partnerships per se. The apology went as follows (emphasis mine):

We sincerely apologize for any scandal that the Couples for Christ leadership, past or present, may have caused among the faithful with our previous partnerships.

I am all out here for Fact 3 I just stated. If the object of the apology was the partnerships per se then to me it would have been stated this way:

We sincerely apologize for the partnerships that the Couples for Christ leadership, past or present, have caused scandal among the faithful

Some of you may say these are all semantics. But look again. I believe our brothers in the International Council have thought long and hard about the wordings until they came out with those we saw in the papers.

What are the implications here? To me, the implications are:

1. The "scandal" refers to the quarrel between our leaders because of the issue of partnerships entered into by CFC for Gawad Kalinga. In other words, the issue is not about the partnerships per se, but the quarrel between our leaders about them, which scandalized the faithful.

2. We ought not feel guilty for the partnerships per se; rather, let's feel guilty for the anger and hatred that resulted in our failure as a community to resolve the matter among ourselves.

3. The "test of obedience" applies to both sides. However, I believe our community has passed some of the tests with flying colors. First, we stuck to our own statutes, which were reviewed and approved by the Vatican. Even Bishop Reyes admitted he had no authority over the Elder's Assembly. Second, we obeyed the Vatican's instruction to apologize for the scandal. Third, we obeyed to the Vatican's ruling that "the name 'Couples for Christ' shall not be used by any other association."

To me, the "test of obedience" now lies on FFL. Will they obey? Will they shut up and stop recycling old issues to justify their lost cause?

If we see them fail, let's pray for them. I believe the process of resolving conflicts as enshrined in our teachings have been followed, all the way to the Vatican. The last resort is to treat them like...I can't say it for the moment. I believe there is still hope, though God's time, not ours, may be at work.

The Round-Eyed Toddler

Anonymous said...


The FP/FFL process of fact-finding is under suspect; so, I am not bothered at all. No problem, really. Let them prove their allegations.


The TRUTH OF THE CROSS (of total obedience and humility to the will of God the Father) set our Lord Jesus Free and triumphant over everything.


While I mentally absorb the concerns and questions about the possible hastiness or prematurity of the public apology made by the IC, my heart is at ease. I have lifted that IC act to God as MY CROSS, TOO. If it is indeed scandalous, it really amounts to nothing compared to that God who hanged. Anyway, I BELIEVE that public apology (or a gesture thereof) has a powerfully savific and redemptive value.

Deo Volente said...

"...although you must forgive me if I say I find it quite off-tangent to my point".

I treasure opinions most specially those that are different from mine. It's from those differences in thoughts where I learn and I get the chance to correct myself.

For me, there is a big difference between the 3 Bishop's "strong recommendation" and Cardinal Rylko's "urging" of the IC to issue an apology:

1. Those of the bishops were still recommendations however strong they were, so the word "disobedience" did not apply if the advice was not heeded

2. That of Cardinal Rylko is an "urging" coming from him as the head of the Pontifical Council (my impression is that this is much greater in magnitude compared to a "recommendation", so "disobedience" might apply if the "urging" is not done)

3. My understanding is that CFC is under direct supervision by the Pontifical Council by virtue of it being recognized as an international association (and then by each bishop in a diocese) but not in the national level. I have many differing interpretations inside of me of what "supervision" means (in terms of morals, faith, administration), and at the same time I am NOT knowledgeable of Canon law regarding this relationship between laity and clergy (on the international level). But I would opine that compared to the 3 bishops, Cardinal Rylko is in a much proper position to "urge", so "disobedience" may still apply (or it may not, but I would err on the side of caution if it were me, specially if any slight non-conformance can be used to condemn the IC).

I think we all agree that no one is infallible here on earth except for the Pope in certain cases. I was also slightly distressed when the IC was urged to issue an apology when there was no fact-finding body that made an investigation. So I also felt a bit of injustice there. At the end though, I saw their humility. It reminded me of another GK event I attended last year where someone from "Bukas Loob sa Diyos" shared on how he was touched when a "low-profile" CFC leader active with GK personally apologized to him on behalf of the whole CFC regarding the crisis.

Na-touch din ako dun sa sinabi ng IC kung paano nila ipinaliwanag ang side nila sa Vatican. Some people saw that as justifying the wrongs or "pagtatakip sa mga kamalian". I saw it as an attempt to save the "things" (partnerships) that are very beneficial not to the IC but to the poor. So I saw it as the IC fighting for the sake of poor who are voiceless in this crisis. From the IC statements, we can sense that there is constant communication between them and the Vatican. I have a feeling that the IC reasoned and not just blindly obeyed, and got answers. When such communication is possible where the 2 sides are willing to listen to each other, good things can happen (so it avoided the need to revisit or invoke the "rules of engagement" between clergy and laity). What was also great was that the communication was private and was not subjected to the comments/criticisms by the "court of public opinion" (unlike the very much publicized exchange between the 3 bishops and the IC). In other words, I think nagka-intindihan si Cardinal Rylko at ang IC.


I agree with this. Hangga't nabubuhay tayo, may pag-asa at maaring mag-bago ang mga patakaran at any time. Di ba matagal din natanggap ng Simbahan na bilog ang planeta? Ngayon medyo unyielding ang Church sa pagtanggap ng tainted help, pero baka magbago din ang policy na yan in the future. The Church is in a constant purification process.

On this issue of accepting tainted money for the sake of the poor, my personal opinion (which I am not going to force to everyone) is still the same as what I said in the ABS-CBN survey:

"Besides, being Pro-Life does not only mean 'conception of new life' but also mean maintaining life for those who are "already living". If you have a brother who is poor and is dying, and you have a drug company that is offering you a 'life-preserving' medicine, would you refuse the offer and possibly risking the possibility that your brother will die just because you care so much about the children who are yet to live?

Personally, if I were in that situation, I would not think twice and I will accept the donation, if it's going to save my brother. Bahala na siguro kung mapunta ako sa impyerno, by doing so."

Nagdadasal nga ako na sana pumayag ang Vatican sa partnerships dahil sayang din naman yung mga maitutulong nito sa mga mahihirap. Para bang minsan mas pinapahalagahan pa natin ang pag-iwas sa iskandalo na maari namang paranoia lang at hindi garantisadong mangyayari compared dun sa pag-tulong sa mahirap na mas sigurado na ma-a-apreciate nila, at mas sigurado na magliligtas ng buhay. In my humble opinion, there is greater injustice in letting the poor suffer for the sake of avoiding a potential scandal.

In the wake of the different opinions in the clergy coming out now (as well as with Cardinal Sin, Mother Theresa, Priests For Life, Rosales, etc) regarding tainted help, I hope that the Vatican (or Rylko) can re-visit the or re-think the policy. Before, I remember they announced their official stand regarding the validity of using vaccines that was produced from aborted babies (or something like that). I hope they can do the same kind of effort now and study the donation issue, and then release a statement. Otherwise, these different opinions from the clergy will continue to divide us.

"No, Brother Deo, you don't have to be dismissive of the "human devils" such as those specific kinds of pharmas - again, I hope they agree to this categorization for the sake of this discussion only - as if their names are forever damned from rendering righteous works or works of charity in any Catholic social undertaking (Brod Deo, to the point of even convicting (!) their employees simply because they indeed are, I mean - do you mean to say that because they work there they may not be entitled anymore to earn some specks of grace or bits of plenary indulgence just in case they decide to part with hard-earned "pharma-tainted" cash for the poor?! Brod, even the offered prayer for them may be pretentious...)."

Forgive me if I might have been confusing in what I said about employees of pharmaceuticals. My intent and my thought that I wrote in my previous entry is very different from how you interpreted it (but I take responsibility if I was unclear). This is really what I was concern of:

If we are to cut off the partnerships with the pharmaceuticals, it might also mean that their employees (who have gladly joined the endeavor of helping the poor) might also stop their volunteer work for GK (assuming that their impetus for joining is their company's involvement). If the employees stop helping in GK, they will no longer be able to witness the love that is happening in GK. With their presence no longer there in this atmosphere of Love in GK, we are going to lose a golden opportunity to evangelize them. (Of course, they can be evangelized outside of CFC or GK, hindi lang naman tayo ang workers, pero yun nga, missed opportunity sa atin). Another side effect is that baka ma-turn OFF pa sila sa atin dahil (in their perception) sila na nga ang gustong tumulong, pipigilan pa natin. (But I am confident in the ability of the IC to explain this matter to them.)

As an analogy, I will share my experience with how I found the joy in worship: When I joined the community, I was a timid worshiper. For me, raising hands or clapping or shouting praises were taboo, and very un-cool. But somehow, the Lord "took advantage" of my love for music (I was very much into secular songs at that time). I joined the music ministry for selfish reasons, because I just love music and I only wanted to just play for my enjoyment. Little by little, I was transformed and the countless songs of worship I've played penetrated the very deep part of me. Praise God that now, I no longer care if I play bad or if I am out of tune, it's only secondary to my desire to glorify His name through the songs. As of this time, I consider myself crazy for Him. In the same way that I was given the chance to discover worship through the Music Ministry, I also pray that the employees of the pharmaceuticals would also have the chance to see Christ in GK, and be transformed by being witnesses to the workings of the Holy Spirit through the endearing Love that is practiced in GK (but sadly, kung putol ang partnerships, baka mawala ang chance).

Again, I'm sorry if I offended anyone or if my thoughts were confusing. I am always bothered at the thought that I might have said something not nice (because in that case, I would rather not say anything at all).

God bless you.

To Bro. Mero,
good idea yata yang "labor-only" help. I wished the authorities can explore that. Baka pwede din nila itanong sa Vatican kung allowable ba yung suggestion mo na sila na ang mag-handle ng funds nila (wala tayo as middleman). Baka eto yung mga alternatives na hinahanap natin.

God bless!!!

Round-Eyed Toddler said...

Bro Deo Volente wrote...
"3. My understanding is that CFC is under direct supervision by the Pontifical Council by virtue of it being recognized as an international association (and then by each bishop in a diocese) but not in the national level. I have many differing interpretations inside of me of what "supervision" means (in terms of morals, faith, administration), and at the same time I am NOT knowledgeable of Canon law regarding this relationship between laity and clergy (on the international level). But I would opine that compared to the 3 bishops, Cardinal Rylko is in a much proper position to "urge", so "disobedience" may still apply (or it may not, but I would err on the side of caution if it were me, specially if any slight non-conformance can be used to condemn the IC)."

When the crisis broke up my first reaction was to consult the Canon Law about the so-called "disobedience." So, let me share with everyone my findings (all emphases mine):

1. The Holy See is the competent authority over CFC.

"Can. 312 §1. The authority competent to erect public associations is:
1/ the Holy See for universal and international associations;"

Though Can 312 refer to "public associations", the same rules apply to private associations.

"Can. 322 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful can acquire juridic personality through a formal decree of the competent ecclesiastical authority mentioned in can. 312.

2. The Holy See approves the CFC statutes, without prejudice to CFC's private nature.

"Can. 322 §2. No private association of the Christian faithful can acquire juridic personality unless the ecclesiastical authority mentioned in can. 312, §1 has approved its statutes. Approval of the statutes, however, does not change the private nature of the association."

3. CFC is subject to the provisions of its statutes

"Can. 321 The Christian faithful guide and direct private associations according to the prescripts of the statutes."

4. The Holy See exercises vigilance over CFC, according to the provisions of CFC statutes and Canon Law.

"Can. 323 §1. Although private associations of the Christian faithful possess autonomy according to the norm of can. 321, they are subject to the vigilance of ecclesiastical authority according to the norm of can. 305 and even to the governance of the same authority."

As to the norm, Canon 305 states that...

"Can. 305 §1. All associations of the Christian faithful are subject to the vigilance of competent ecclesiastical authority which is to take care that the integrity of faith and morals is preserved in them and is to watch so that abuse does not creep into ecclesiastical discipline. This authority therefore has the duty and right to inspect them according to the norm of law and the statutes. These associations are also subject to the governance of this same authority according to the prescripts of the canons which follow.

5. CFC can freely choose its leaders

"Can. 324 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful freely designates its moderator and officials according to the norm of the statutes."

6. CFC can freely choose its Spiritual Director, if it wants to

"Can. 324 §2. A private association of the Christian faithful can freely choose a spiritual advisor, if it desires one, from among the priests exercising ministry legitimately in the diocese; nevertheless, he needs the confirmation of the local ordinary.

7. CFC must adhere to ecclesiastical authority's verdict on ALL donations for Gawad Kalinga

"Can. 325 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful freely administers those goods it possesses according to the prescripts of the statutes, without prejudice to the right of competent ecclesiastical authority to exercise vigilance so that the goods are used for the purposes of the association.

§2. A private association is subject to the authority of the local ordinary according to the norm of can. 1301 in what pertains to the administration and distribution of goods which have been donated or left to it for pious causes.

To those who are curious about what Can. 1301 says, then click here

8. We should not take the word "scandal" lightly. It's a heavy word in Canon Law.

Can. 326 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful ceases to exist according to the norm of its statutes. The competent authority can also suppress it if its activity causes grave harm to ecclesiastical doctrine or discipline or is a scandal to the faithful.

My conclusion, so far, is that the CFC is on the right track by admitting its perceived faults and not justifying it, and obeying the orders of Cardinal Rylko.

Humility is the best policy. It's the policy of Christ no less.

The Round-Eyed Toddler.

Jiggs said...

Off Topic (OT) comment:

in last night's teaching for Mission Core (MC) on Leadership and Spirituality, there was a slide that says one of the qualities of a good leader is "being still"...

and then a few of us clapped our hands...

i guess you know who's leadership exhibits such quality/ies.

Anonymous said...


1. K lang, after all we have agreed that with the public apology, IC has shown everyone the virtue of humility.

2. What about engaging in the partnership AGAIN? PUEDE BA KAYA? DID or DID NOT IC VOW TO DO IT AGAIN? Since there are allegations of misrepresentation of the facts and circumstances by FP, can we actually go on as is and let Padilla et al or similar entities file the same complaint, subject to a serious, proper, and credible research and documentation of facts and evidences? IS IT NOT THEREFORE A GOOD OPPORTUNITY TO PROVE THE CFC-IC POINT BY CONTINUING WITH THE CONTROVERSIAL PARTNERSHIP IN ORDER TO MAKE WAY FOR A VERY, VERY, VERY RELIABLE PRESENTATION OF "FACTS AND CIRCUMSTNACES"?

3. Strictly speaking, is the CFC-IC ESTOPPED from entering into partnerships with pharma companies suspected of being "anti-life" but which are at the same time "pro-life"? Remember that the report brought to Vatican was like a well-kept secret, the contents of which could not be validated. Also, will not the continuance of the partnerships complained about provide a good opportunity for the CFC defenders to challenge the moral arguments of FP et al?

4. If the Lopez-Tan research or investigation report can be found, while the partnership with pharma companies continue, it can provide insight into the situation as it was observed earlier vis-a-vis the present circumstances.

5. Bishop F. Claver, SJ, who was a Vatican official himself, I suppose, when he represented the indigenous peoples then, gives a general reference to dealing with so-called "tainted money" (money from the "devil") to help the poor. If the partnerships continue, we can have some detail about the extent of cooperation with evil our GKs extended. Furthermore, under this situation, an interested party like FFL through FP can lodge the formal complaint, while CFC can also be given the chance to show one and all how a complaint within it is fairly investigated and disposed.


solidyfc said...

T2s, gnamit nga nila ung news release ng vatican! Well, here is there MIS-interpretation of the news.



New ecclesial movements such as CFC have been recognized by the Church as God's blessings for the work of the third millennium. This is why CFC was officially recognized by the Vatican, the only one for the whole of Asia. CFC works as an integral part of the one Church, according to her life and mission.

While ecclesial movements are given wide autonomy, in order not to stifle the Spirit and its particular charism, the pastoral solicitude of the hierarchy is still very important. The bishops provide guidance, wisdom and protection. This is especially the case when there is conflict within the movement, as happens many times, and especially as such conflicts involve the very top leaders. Where do they then turn to? They should turn to the bishops.

CFC ultimately split because the top leadership of CFC, the Int'l Council (IC), did not submit to the discernment of ecclesiatical authority. The bishops (Archbp Lagdameo, Bp Reyes, Bp Villegas) only intervened in order to correct the veering away, and did it out of great love for CFC. But the IC refused the strong recommendations of the 3 bishops, reneged on the win-win agreement approved by the bishops, showed continuing disrespect to their Spiritual Director by not following his directives (such as giving all CFC members his letters addressed to all) and by distorting his actions (thus causing him to formally correct them at least 3 times).

All the disrespectful actions of the IC led to the resignation of Bp Reyes as their Spiritual Director. Such is an unprecedented move! In resigning, Bp Reyes said that he would always side with what was right and true. He had found that CFC under the IC had veered away and had been disobedient to the bishops, and were no longer following his wise advise and directions to them. With the resignation of their very own Spiritual Director, the non-submission to ecclesial authority by CFC under the IC was complete. CFC had lost the guidance, wisdom, discernment, and moral grounding that could only come from the bishops.

Having rejected the bishops, CFC-GK, through its apologists, even now attacks them, attacking even Cardinal Rylko of the Vatican. Now they also no longer have their founder, in whom the charism of the ecclesial movement is vested. Having lost the guidance and protection of the pastors and shepherds of the Church, CFC under the IC may simply have lost what is good, true and beautiful.


Anonymous said...

BROTHER c.tsew:

Your view:

...FP has not substantiated the sins he accused GK of committing, and Vatican appeared like a Grand Inquisitor of heretics placing the burden of proof about alleged scandals on the accused (CFC and GK) instead of the accuser (FP and FFL)...

What about:





No Nong for Me Thanks said...

Round Eyed Toddler said:

8. We should not take the word "scandal" lightly. It's a heavy word in Canon Law.

Can. 326 §1. A private association of the Christian faithful ceases to exist according to the norm of its statutes. The competent authority can also suppress it if its activity causes grave harm to ecclesiastical doctrine or discipline or is a scandal to the faithful.

What is ironic is that the greatest part of the scandal has been as a result of FFL leadership blasting messages worldwide, sending Nonong to attack GK on national television, and the like.

Would not a much wiser approach - especially in light of the fact that GK's partnerships were the same as the Bishops' Caritas partnerships, and other Catholic organizations - to seek out clear Vatican answers regarding the morality of it, rather than carrying out this public scandal-mongering?

Surely FFL leaders' activities have played a huge part in generating scandal.

If the motivation was truly the restoration of CFC, I can't see how this was a good move. Much better to seek counsel from the Vatican, wise in the knowledge that such counsel will affect the poor, Caritas, the Catholic Medical Missions Board, and many others.

Really, it was just one more attack on GK and CFC, like Nonong on national TV, apparently designed to succeed where the plans of the Easter Playboys and Bunnies meeting minutes failed.

WillyJ said...

The following is just my opinion which might put the matter of "obedience" in its proper perspective. I encourage critique because the more we understand the concept, the better we will be able to "think" with the Church and work in harmony as "One with the Catholic Church".

Supervision in the Church follows the authority granted at each level of the Church hierarchy operating under the principle of Subsidiarity. The principle of subsidiarity is an empowerment principle that calls for determination and action at the lowest possible level. Notwithstanding the immense spread of the Catholic Church, it is a relatively flat hierarchy : Pope – Bishops – Parish Priests. The principle of subsidiarity allows Bishops to exercise a wide latitude of prerogative over their respective Dioceses, although this latitude is limited only to their respective dioceses. This includes judgment calls on the application of Faith and Morals as well as disciplinary measures in administrative matters over the clergy and laity under his jurisdiction. The Roman Curia (of which the Pontifical Council of the Laity is a part of) is a normal extension of the Pope’s administrative authority in this hierarchy, which is referred to as the "Holy See". The principle of subsidiarity specifies that all problems should be solved at the lowest possible level. This is not to say that Faith and Morals are permitted to have varying interpretations at each level, because in theory, Faith and Morals in the Catholic Church is to be universally applied. Thus when Bishops and the Roman Curia at their respective levels issues out directives in the realm of Faith and Morals, the imperative nature of prompt obedience is indisputable. However, it does not preclude the respectful request for clarifications and further constructive dialogue, with a posture of seeking further productiveness and growth in the Faith. Pope Benedict XVI affirms at the recent Congress of PCL Bishops: "Difficulties and misunderstandings about particular questions do not authorize closure.", that "dialogue" and "collaboration" is the style to adopt, and that "prudence," "patience" and "much love" --especially where correction is necessary -- are the ways to be taken.

It should be noted that the same principle of subsidiarity effectively dissuades the Church hierarchy’s intervention in internal administrative and governance affairs of recognized lay associations.

Anonymous said...

BROTHER round-eyed toddler:

"The "scandal" refers to the quarrel between our leaders because of the issue of partnerships entered into by CFC for Gawad Kalinga. In other words, the issue is not about the partnerships per se, but the quarrel between our leaders about them, which scandalized the faithful."

You know, initially happy ako because of what you say that the issue was not the partnership, because in another entry, I have recommended the continuation of the partnership with pharma companies so that we can validate or invalidate FP and FFL claims with a reliable process of investigation. After all, I thought, hindi na man talaga na prove o na-substantiate ni FP - siguro he just "lobbied" for it; therefore, in the truest sense, no sin nor scandal is yet committed in the partnership with the pharma companies manufacturing contraceptives!

(Please note that we have acknowledged the good gesture of our CFC-IC to obey and publicly apologize as directed by Card. Rylko. However, we can negotiate for the resumption of the partnership with pharma companies producing contraceptives for purposes of looking more deeply into the controversial issues, challenging the accusers to apply openly, and before the public eye the same rudiments of investigation they purported used.)

Kaya lang, when I analyzed your statement, mukhang may konting defect. The quarrel is a "result" or "effect" of the partnership. So, ang main "issue" or "cause" of the problem is the "partnership". When we continue to ask "why", the answer becomes "the issue" or "cause" which will turn out to be the "effect" of another "cause" until all possible relevant questions are exhausted, and we will have arrived at the "main issue", or the "main problem".

Well, I will still push for the resumption of said partnerships with pharma companies for reasons other than that "the partnership was the problem"...

Your research on Cannon Laws relevant to possible "disobedience" of CFC as a private lay organization has enlightened me personally. Thanks, ha?

garnet said...

I just want to let you know that the contribution of the Pharma co to the GK was not monetary in nature;

Because of the involvement of their company, 800 of their employees got inspired and gave personal time to do work in GK.

During their Christmas party, the hat was passed around among the employees
and they raised Php500,000 for GK.

I just know that they are very hurt when their partnership was terminated
and that one employee commented that they will just look for another project for their CSR where their intentions will not be suspect.

Now tell me... didnt we just lose the chance to evangelize these 800 employees? Isn't this the greater scandal?

Timothy1 said...

I can't understand FFL why they can't fight head-on all the pharma companies that manufactures contraceptives. Why don't they call a boycott or a trade sanction or something to make the pharma companies bow to their demands? But instead they bully CFC.

If you think about it the pharma companies are the one contributing, how about the people who contributes to the pharma companies that lets them stay in business. I'm talking about their shareholders. investors, how about the people who buys their medicine from them. I for one take Norvasc which is made by Pfiezer. Am I suppose to feel guilty about it?

Anonymous said...

Can anyone please scan and post the Philstar ad of Nonong C? Thanks!

Yeyeng Conformas said...

Sa iyo Nonong Contreras:

Patetik ka naman, 'tol. Sa dinamidami ng sinabi mo, nahalata lang tuloy ang kasalatan ng iyong pag-iisip. Pero ganyan talaga ang isang taong nag-ngingitngit; bumabaluktok ang matinong pangangatwiran. Isang araw at hindi ka na galit, balikan mo lahat ang pinagsusulat mo at mahihiya ka sa sarili mo.

Truly yours :D

Move on, FFL Leaders said...

Timothy1 said:

"I can't understand FFL why they can't fight head-on all the pharma companies that manufactures contraceptives. Why don't they call a boycott or a trade sanction or something to make the pharma companies bow to their demands? But instead they bully CFC."

Well, although FFL's pronouncements have not always made sense objectively, they've all had one thing in common...

...they always attacked GK or CFC with the intention of undermining them, in order to draw people to follow them instead.

That's likely why they don't concentrate on the big picture, and that's likely also why we don't here a peep out of them regarding Caritas.

Anonymous said...

Nonong Contreras, I believe that you go to your doctor for prescriptions, do you ask your doctor na baka Pfizer ang manufacturer, anong gagawin mo? Pagtatawanan ka lang ng doctor mo? Baka ang iniinum mong gamot ngayon gawa ng Pfizer. eh kung sila lang ang mayroon noon, anong gagawin Mo? Mahilig ka rin namang sumagot, sagutin mo ito.

Anonymous said...

Pope says bishops obliged to guide, not suffocate new lay movements

VATICAN, May 19, 2008-- While bishops have an obligation to guide new lay movements and associations, they must take care not to suffocate them, Pope Benedict XVI said.

Bishops are called to discern and guide the movements, not to "dominate their gifts, but rather to be on guard against the danger of suffocating them," the pope told a seminar for bishops sponsored by the Pontifical Council for the Laity.

Meeting the bishops at the end of their May 15-17 meeting, the pope said the new lay groups that flourished immediately after the Second Vatican Council are important gifts to the church inspired by the Holy Spirit.

They were born in a period "full of enthusiastic promises, but also marked by difficult trials" for the church, Pope Benedict said.

"Prejudices, resistance and tensions" often accompanied the formation of the groups, most of which were not born as a parish or diocesan initiative, but from the prayers and dreams of their founders, he said.

While hesitation to accept the movements mostly has disappeared, the pope said many of them still need assistance and guidance to reach the maturity that would allow them to preserve their own identity while fitting better into the structure and pastoral outreach of the wider church.

The movements, he said, "are not a problem or another risk that is added to our already serious duties. No, they are a gift of the Lord, a precious resource for enriching the whole Christian community with their charisms." (CNS)

p.e. said...

can somebody post the phil star add of nonong contreras here? curious lang kung ano sinasabi. :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks, SOLID:

For all the dead, stale, and hackneyed issues that FFL -- only and minus CFC, that is -- is making a futile revival of.

I say, PATHETIC, and WRONG AGAIN!,(if you quoted the article correctly, Solid)! Now FP and FFL are saying "not following a directive..." and they used to say "disobeyed the recommendation..."

Kawawa ka naman, FP (and FFL), you seem to be losing your bearings consistently. Just a friendly note for correct thinking and for sanity, too: to OBEY A DIRECTIVE, to FOLLOW A RECOMMENDATION, not vice versa.

And then, just perhaps a recommendation to think differently: have you considered that perhaps BP Reyes realized you have used him enough already?

WillyJ said...

Nonong's Philstar ad is posted here:

Bro. Mero :-) said...

To Anonymous brother who said to Round eye toodler this:

"Kaya lang, when I analyzed your statement, mukhang may konting defect. The quarrel is a "result" or "effect" of the partnership."

I think the result of the quarrel is not the partnership per se. Front na lng ni Frank yun. How can they quarrel over a partnership with pharmas if they themselves in the council (with Frank as the Chairman) approved for it?

Maybe, when the GK was so strong and beginning to left behind the CFC members who are not in full communion with GK but in communion with Frank, JEALOUSY AROSE. Frank was caught in the middle of a crossfire between Tony and Frank's friends who are the sources of so many complaints, dba? Now Frank has to make a choice between his defendee-Tony, and his Easter Bunnies. What was Frank's choice?

He wrote the paper CFC and GK#3. A reversed statement of what he had written in his CFC & GK 1 and 2 and all the other memos.

Try to go over the "Chronology of events" posted in the upper right side of this blog. It started with Ramon Magsaysay award.

Bro. Mero :-)

C.D. said...

Bro Diczen,

I can't approve your comment as it is, can you please tone it down and try again?

Thank you,


mike said...

it has been a while... and i must say we have only been reactive to whatever FFL says..

everytime FFL comes out with issues and statements, we in CFC reacts, defends, replies, trying hard to voice out and refute without becoming unchristian.

can we be proactive this time and raise complaints against FFL because

1. they bring confusion because of the continued use of the CFC name

2. they cause division, not only within CFC but also among the clergy (ultimately the church if FFL will have their way) with their intent of breaking down CFC.

can we not talk to vatican and CBCP and tell them how FFL is vent on hurting us?

My elders, brethren can we not do this?

Anonymous said...

Here goes, speaking my mind ... seeing the truth. Today's scripture applies ... May 21, 2008

Thoughts: Jealousy and envy. We get upset and jealous because someone else has taken our place or taken the spotlight away from us. The reason we may be sad or feel discontent over another's good fortune or excellence is the fear of losing our own value and excellence or being replaced by a rival. Envy is contrary to love. Both the object of love and the object of envy is our neighbor's good, but by contrary movements, since love rejoices in our neighbor's good, while envy grieves over it. How can we overcome envy and jealousy? With the love that God puts into our hearts through the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). This love seeks the highest good of our neighbor. Paul the Apostle says that "love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right" (1 Corinthians 13:5-6). Let us ask the Lord to fill us with his purifying love that we may rejoice in the good of others, even in those who may cross us at times or cause us difficulty. Whenever someone chooses to act for good in order to overcome evil that person brings glory to God. When was the last time you went opposite from what your logic dictated for the sake of love and peace?

Reflect/Meditate/Contemplate: Find a quiet place by yourself like when everyone’s in bed, open your palms and ask the Holy Spirit to come to you. Open your Bible and read: James 4:13-17; Mark 9:38-40

Today’s very short gospel from Mark fits well with the realities of modern life. The disciples are concerned that someone else is driving out demons in Jesus’ name. Essentially they are suggesting to Jesus that he protect his turf and make clear that only He is a fully sanctioned demon-driver. Jesus, of course, sees the big picture. Driving out demons, healing the sick, feeding the poor or whatever other work of charity one might imagine is a good thing no matter who sanctions it. One can almost feel Jesus’ bemusement at his disciples’ entreaties. And then he utters one of the most famous and gentle rebukes in the Bible: “For whoever is not against us is for us.” How I wish we see the world in these terms consistently. Unfortunately we often see it the other way: that everyone who fails to praise us is really against us. This failing is as human as it is inevitable as it is ancient. And the first reading hits the mark exactly with its admonition about boasting. If we aren’t getting praised, what do we often do? We praise ourselves by boasting.

We human beings naturally gravitate towards our own psychological needs and satisfaction and have a hard time being truly “other aware.” If this unsanctioned disciple is driving out demons and giving relief to others in Jesus’ name, then how possibly could the work of Jesus and his disciples be diminished? What good would come of stopping him and not allowing him to do his good works for other people? Oddly enough, we often seem more concerned with who gets the credit than we do with who actually benefits. Deep inside, we often would prefer that half as much good be done if we could get all the credit than if twice the good were to be done with the credit shared. So here we must imitate Jesus and worry not about who is getting the credit but rather about whether God’s work is being done. [Ref: St. Ignatius Spirituality in Everyday Living (Jesuits)]

"Lord Jesus Christ, your love knows no bounds. Free my heart of all jealousy, pride, and fear that I may love my neighbor wholly for their good, just as you have loved me." Jesus I trust in You.

/Show Me

To suffocate is to kill said...

So the POPE says bishops should only "guide, NOT suffocate new lay movements!"

Now looking back in history, when a Bishop from Bataan, Bishop Soc Villegas writes CFC a letter telling CFC how to separate itself from GK -- with all details fed to him by Frank -- is that guiding or suffocating?

When Bishop G. Reyes called for a meeting of the CFC Elders Assembly, after Father Sobrejuanite spoke of CFC's independence, for him (Bishop Reyes) to insist that the Elders' Assembly should really not make an election -- is that guiding or suffocating?

So the Bishops must have realized this and have stopped meddling into affairs of the lay community, CFC, -- specially as they could not find anything so wrong about its charism of building churches for home and the poor!

That was noticed by the Nonong Contreras & Servant General, FAP! That's why you now have the infamous 'twiddling thumbs, reading tea leaves and smoking pot" e-mail!

And to divert attention from that 'Evil in Nonong's Detail message -- they had to invest at least 150,000 to 200,000 pesos to buy a 1/2 page advertisement from Phil Star.

I agree that's a desperate move!

Frank, if you follow the Holy Spirit and then abandon the harassment you are causing CFC on the hallow charges you keep repeating -- the Holy Spirit will lead you to beautiful time of reaping souls for God in ANOTHER MISSION FIELD, not the field he already keeps and watches for the mission workers of the CFC Social, Family & GK Ministries.

Frank, huwag mo kami pakinggan -- kasi sobra ang believe mo sa sarili mo -- pakinggan mo ang Holy Spirit.
Siguro naman hindi mo ito iko-konsider na maligning!

Tigilan mo na rin yang linya mo na "Maligning Me" -- dyan nanggaling ang patuloy mong galit. (By the way, di ba ang isang test ng leadership is to be challenged on his pronouncements? Paki analyze mo mga sinusulat at sinasabi mo...baka dapat i-question talaga!)

Anonymous said...

Under what circumstance did the POPE make that statement for Bishops to guide and not suffocate lay organizations?

Would you suppose he already heard and got displeased about Bishop Gabby Reyes' moves and biased actions against CFC? Do you think perhaps he heard of the name Frank Padilla, too, and perhaps even asked "Who is this Frank Padilla?", too?

Anonymous said...


Comment ko earlier kay round-eyed toddler: "Kaya lang, when I analyzed your statement, mukhang may konting defect. The quarrel is a "result" or "effect" of the partnership."

Sabi mo: "I think the result of the quarrel is not the partnership per se."

Sagot ko ngayon: OO NGA NAMAN, Brod. Quarrel resulted to something else seguro; pero ang "controversial" partnership with pharma companies gave way to, RESULTed to, QUARREL. No quarrel about this, talaga, Brod, because it only has to do with that sentence quoted earlier from "toddler", di ba? But I will concede that as you imply, perhaps Padilla was already in a “quarelling mode” (my phrase here) even before the controversial partnerships with pharma companies were contracted, because he was already JEALOUS of Bro. Tony. May tama nga din naman ang thread na ‘to... interesting, Brod, hehe.

CD, thank you for giving me this chance to clarify. I also want to compliment you Bro. Mero for the strong defense you have always put up to uphold the real CFC. Tingin, ko lapse lang talaga ito dahil sa dami na ng nag-dialogue dito – 85 entries na yata! Praise God!

Now, if I may, I want to raise again my pitch for reviving / re-establishing the partnership with the controversial pharma companies.

It appears that when Padilla, Bp Reyes and the FFL Bishops tried to let us see through their eyes that there was a scandal, they have suffocated our minds and did not give us any breathing space... (my compliments to the blogger there who informs that His Holiness, Pope Benedict XIII himself advised his bishops recently not to suffocate lay movements and associations...)

Thanks to the less bigoted view of the likes of Bishop Claver, we can look at the "controversial pharma companies" as "redeemable human evils" whose empathy or "awa" for the poor may be part of their efforts at reparation.

On the other hand, I will venture to say that those who oppose or condemn as scandalous the pro-poor assistance coming from the "controversial" pharma companies have the real unredeemable devil at their sides or in their insides, wanting to wreck havoc on what Bishop Claver calls their "infexibly righeous certitudes!"






Athrun Atreides said...

The categories of FFL membership:

1. The Easteristas: the core group who founded FFL and continue to deride CFC.

2. Local CFC leaders with personal/professional differences with the community, especially during the Crisis. Giving up on resolving their inis, they chose to establish the local FFL in their area.

3. Local CFC leaders and members who were conditioned into thinking by those from #1 and #2 that CFC was at fault. They joined FFL without being told that there were other solutions than secession.

4. Inactive CFC members who have laid low, and were enticed to join the FFL because the FFL leaders were more zealous in explaining issues than us in CFC.

5. Other CFC leaders and members who were bored/dismayed with CFC, or felt that CFC was too good for them, and joined FFL because they thought it would be a fresh start.

6. Other CFC leaders and members who realized that everyone in their local area have joined the FFL and so joined out of peer pressure and/or lack of contact with CFC.

7. CFC leaders and members who read everything from both sides (including this blog), talked to people, and prayed to God, and decided to join FFL.

8. FFL leaders and members evangelized through their Christian Life Seminars.

solidyfc said...

Titos!!! I found the website of the break-away community nung 2002. The issue? GK, receiving funds and veering away from the mission.

If you all remember t2 Lito Urgino! one of the incorporators of CFC-GMFI way back in the split of 1993, guess what :) He's the founding member of Families in Christ Jesus Community

And, bkit prng wlang controversey na nainvolve ang Vatican?

1st-Tito Lito didn't claim to be the "FOUNDER" of the charism.

2nd-When they seperated, they started to move on, they didn't dwell in the past issues.

3rd- They didn't claim for the use of the CFC NAME!!!

4th-Tito Lito didn't poach and told others that the evil one is taking over CFC!

5th-They started a new logo, a new community, a new board of elders. And didn't use any media to "DESTROY" the old CFC in where they belong

6th-They Moved on with their own vision.

and 7th- Tito Frank was still in the council ;) And t2 nonong was still a BOE member ;)

The result? they are now growing, and majority are non-filipinos! their community is flourishing although their modules of their LCS (Life in Christ Series) is same as to our CLP, except the 3rd part. Still they were able to move on.

Kasi po sila! Ndi prang bata! They state their claim...then...MOVE ON!

Hindi nila sinisira ung reputation nung dati nilang pinaggalingan, because they know this is UN-Christian.

Nagtataka rin po ako...why won't FFL MOVE ON! Why don't they stop dwelling in the past! Rather than learning from it! Hindi na nga sila pinapakeelaman! and still they continue.

Baka may Easter Group Meetings nnman yan!

Action Plan-Destroy the "FAKE" CFC kaya ang nasa agenda nila?

haizz, anyways, gudluck and godbless to FCJC, because truly you have moved on with ur vision and mission, and the result was fruitful. Ndi lng pinoys nkikinabang.

So now FFL...are u willing to do the same?

A challenge...MOVE ON! and REJOICE! Ginagalit niu lng sarili niu!!! :D

God Bless to all

Love one another
Cluster B Head

Anonymous said...

OO nga Frank P, tama ang sinabi ni 'To Suffocate is to Kill' na tigilan mo na yung 'maligning me'.

I agree .. yan ang cause ng anger mo nagsimula lamang sa tampo, hidwanan, inggitan, a-way ninyong dalawa ni TM.

Siguro nakadagdag pa dyan yung galit si Sandra Sotto sa "Founder of GK' ang ginawad ng publiko kay Tony Meloto.

Wala akong alam na sinimulan ni TM ang pagtawag sa sarili niya na 'Founder ng GK'. Instead I heard TM speak of the many caretaker teams who sacrifice a lot for the success of GK.

Much unlike you, who will go to all extent to prove to everyone you are FOUNDER OF CFC. Buti na lang nandyan pa sila Oca, Roland, Oland, Nila, Ruby, Maribel, Nonong, Chona na naniniwala pa dyan. Sana huwag sila magising para sa kapakanan mo.

For quite a time, we took that LIE unquestioningly until a VIC G told us the truth in "Origins".

So you get bad spirits kasi siguro naka-focus sa pagpapalaki ng hurt mo dahil dayan sa maligning na walang kawenta-kwenta. Ikaw din ang nagturo sa amin na FOCUS ON CHRIST! Di ba si CHRIST ang talagang na-MALIGN? Eh walang sin yon!

If Christ who is GOD can be maligned, why can't a Frank Padilla not be? Eh yung Frank Padilla, may sin yun di ba?

So talaga, tigilan mo na bro ang iyong walang sawa na pagtawag sa "supposed veering away ng CFC" -- actually that truth is, I think CFC was led to VEER AWAY FROM YOU!

Tingin ko dapat you look at it as a cleansing process....masyado na kasi lumaki ang POWERS mo sa CORRIDORS of CFC kaya pinapaliit ni GOD. Binigyan ka niya ng bagong community na maganda naman ang bakit ayaw mo bitawan ang ngalang CFC..kasi masyado ka believe na ikaw ang founder ano?

Siguro Frank, minsan you have to learn how to obey...pakita mo sa amin na dating saludo sa iyo!

I suggest you obey Cardinal other association can use the CFC name! Please do not bother to write a lengthy position paper why it is not to be. Sayang lang oras ka na lAng sa CLS!

Sigue, I wish you do not wish or pray for me to go to hell because I will pray for you to go to heaven! In God's time that is!

By the way, slow down when you drive, senior citizens have lower reflexes! And don't drive when you are angry, as even the zig-zag of Alpadi are dangerous and slippery on rainy seasons!

Take care, my former pastor!

solidyfc said...

Excerpts from their l8test article

Defending the church part 3

"We call on the IC, whose members say they have control over GK, to correct Boy Montelibano. We call on Joe Tale and the others to defend the Church and the hierarchy from such constant verbal abuse. We call on them to protect the hearts and minds of their members, especially the youth, from the secular ideas of New Age.

We call upon everyone to pray intently and incessantly for our beloved bishops and priests. And speak up in their defense whenever they are attacked.

God bless and protect us all.


Nagiba ang ihip ng hangin t2's, prng ndi na masyado inatake ang IC, they are calling us to defend the church from VERBAL ABUSE!!! :D

Tito...mtagal na po nmin siyang dindepensahan :D

Anonymous said...

why can't the Easter Group come face-to-face and talk with whoever they have problems with?

i just scanned Nonong's ad. puro salita. he could have given the P200K to their full-time workers (who are now looking for work elsewhere). Nonong could have called Mr. Esposo and talked about his questions but instead fired an expensive ad just to display more of his air.

they always hide behind an email or a newspaper ad. and when confronted, they hide behind their arrogance.

what has come of these men?

for sure, i would want to be in a group that they are leading!

Marthe '57 said...

I have researched on what Bro Karel San Juan, when he gave a talk on Leadership and Spirituality..

Narcissistic personality disorder:
DSM-IV divides personality disorders into three clusters based on symptom similarities.

This clustering categorizes the Narcissistic personality disorder as
a)cluster B personality disorder, those personality disorders having in common an excessive sense of self importance.

b) Also in that cluster are the Borderline personality disorder, the Histrionic personality disorder and the Antisocial personality disorder.

DSM Criteria

A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:

1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance
2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
3. believes that he or she is "special" and unique
4. requires excessive admiration
5. has a sense of entitlement
6. is interpersonally exploitative
7. lacks empathy
8. is often envious of others or believes others are envious of him or her
9. shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

Pathological narcissism occurs in a spectrum of severity. In its more extreme forms, it is narcissistic personality disorder.

NPD is considered to result from a person's belief that he or she is flawed in a way that makes the person fundamentally unacceptable to others.

This belief is held below the person's conscious awareness; such a person would typically deny thinking such a thing, if questioned. In order to protect themselves against the intolerably painful rejection and isolation that (they imagine) would follow if others recognised their supposedly defective nature, such people make strong attempts to control others’ view of them and behaviour towards them.

People who are overly narcissistic commonly feel rejected, humiliated and threatened when criticised. To protect themselves from these dangers, they often react with disdain, rage, and/or defiance to any slight criticism, real or imagined.

To avoid such situations, some narcissistic people withdraw socially and may feign modesty or humility.

With narcissistic personality disorder, the person's perceived fantastic grandiosity, often coupled with a hypomanic mood, is typically not commensurate with his or her real accomplishments.

please check out this link

Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration. They believe that they're superior to others and have little regard for other people's feelings. But behind this mask of ultra-confidence lies a fragile self-esteem, vulnerable to the slightest criticism.

Narcissistic personality disorder is one of several types of personality disorders. Personality disorders are conditions in which people have traits that cause them to feel and behave in socially distressing ways, limiting their ability to function in relationships and in other areas of their life.

Signs and symptoms

Narcissistic personality disorder symptoms may include:

1) Believing that you're better than others
2) Fantasizing about power, success and attractiveness
3) Exaggerating your achievements or talents
4) Expecting constant praise and admiration
5) Believing that you're special
6) Failing to recognize other people's emotions and feelings
7) Expecting others to go along with your ideas and plans
8) Taking advantage of others
9) Expressing disdain for those you feel are inferior
10) Being jealous of others
11) Believing that others are jealous of you
12) Trouble keeping healthy relationships
13) Setting unrealistic goals
14) Being easily hurt and rejected
15) Having a fragile self-esteem
16) Appearing as tough-minded or unemotional

Although some features of narcissistic personality disorder may seem like having confidence or strong self-esteem, it's not the same.

Narcissistic personality disorder crosses the border of healthy confidence and self-esteem into thinking so highly of yourself that you put yourself on a pedestal. In contrast, people who have healthy confidence and self-esteem don't value themselves more than they value others.

When you have narcissistic personality disorder, you may come across as conceited, boastful or pretentious. You often monopolize conversations. You may belittle or look down on people you perceive as inferior. You may have a sense of entitlement. And when you don't receive the special treatment to which you feel entitled, you may become very impatient or angry. You may also seek out others you think have the same special talents, power and qualities — people you see as equals.

But underneath all this grandiosity often lies a very fragile self-esteem. You have trouble handling anything that may be perceived as criticism. You may have a sense of secret shame and humiliation. And in order to make yourself feel better, you may react with rage or contempt and efforts to belittle the other person to make yourself appear better.

this is the link;

My thoughts:
Let us look and reflect into who and what is within us, one may just be surprised that there is a 'little ms/mr narcistic' inside.

While we know what to do with the little mr/ms npd within us, what is of greater import is what we do with "Mr NPD" out there...

Danny, WB said...

Bakit hindi na lang kasi nila gamitin ang kanilang LEGAL name that was registered in the SEC.

REstoration MOVEment For Family & Life Foundation

Para hindi malito ang mga tao... :)

zambales said...

It's good to say that Zambales is still shielded amidst all of these. Please relax muna tayo lahat and watch a movie.

Anonymous said...

i just scanned Nonong's ad. puro salita. he could have given the P200K to their full-time workers (who are now looking for work elsewhere).

uu nga...musta na ka mga ftw? lalo na mga yfc ftw....

yfc from mla

Anonymous said...

Brothers and sisters... I browsed through the net for the Couples for Christ websites and I found out that most of the websites esp by CFC USA were already been invaded by FFL. The content of these sites gives confusion because most of the activities written is from CFC and they have just incorporated some of their logos and activities within.

I think this should sound a call to our leaders esp the IC. This is a concrete manifestation of the confusion we are all worried about. Hope somebody can let the Vatican and the CBCP view these websites to prove that there is indeed an ongoing "destruction" efforts ployed by FFL.

Let us continue to pray and love more...


Anonymous said...


Website ng FFL USA ( ang na visit mo.

Ito ang sa ORIGINAL CFC:





Sana they are part of the solution to avoid confusion PERU CONSENTIDORES kasi hinayaan lang din ang webmaster ILAGAY ANG LOGO NATIN DIBA HINATI HATI NA NILA ANG LOGO NATIN at hang it in THEIR TRUMPET.

Anonymous said...

Iba nga ang

CFC talaga sila peru affiliated ng CFC-FFL.

COmbination ng CFC and CFC-FFL mga sulat doon.

Anonymous said...

Through an FFL members eyes...

I am an FFL member and here is MY OWN take on these issues:

Do I agree with Nonong C? NO, what he is doing is wrong. He is not showing humility, brotherly love and he is in the process of bringing the whole FFL down with him.

Do I agree with Bishop Claver? Yes, it is hard to evangelize people with empty stomachs.

What do I think about receiving donations from "bad" pharmas? For me, it is ok, just like willyj said the good effect is sufficiently desirable to compensate for the bad effect.

So what do I think about the whole 'veering away' thing? It is not the real issue. For me the real issue is about leaders who got swarmed by their pride and forgot about the absolute purpose of this community. That is the saddest part.

Why the heck am I still with FFL? If given another chance would you have stayed with CFC? I am very very happy with the decision I made with discernement from God. As I said before, I have personal experiences when I served with GK that largely contributed in our decision, and as much as I see pride and wrongdoing in FFL's leadership, I also see the same for the IC.

Are you taking steps to help out with the current issue? Yes. I already emailed FFL leaders telling them how I feel. In the meantime I am not letting these issues get in the way of my eveangelization. We are currently holding CLS's and helping out couples become closer to God.

FFL still hoping for a united CFC

jonitanitayturin said...

Praise you, brother “Anonymous FFL hoping for a united CFC”. Thank God, we hear from one like you.

You know, I heave a sigh of relief: that you can agree with Bishop Claver, that you also disagree with Bro Nonong Contreras, and that the "veering away” was not the real issue for you. I am also glad that you are taking steps to let the FFL leadership know your take of the current issues, thanks in good part (I want to assume), to the information provided by this IDOTRCFC blog.

Brod/Sis, I agree with what you aptly stated as the basic bone of contention of the conflict, thus: “For me the real issue is about leaders who got swarmed by their pride and forgot about the absolute purpose of this community. That is the saddest part.”

I pray that you can eagerly move forward now, although not having any fundamental difference, you may still want to attain your service goals in the Lord through the current set up here in CFC. I can’t really tell from the distance here in Mindanao, but by their obedience to Cardinal Rylko, I am convinced that CFC has a very reasonable, humble and God-fearing leaders in the IC now. For this reason, I invite you to try talking with them, not necessarily to rejoin, but to exchange notes as co-workers in the vineyard.

As regards GK, I invite you to read the Ascension Sunday homily of the reclusive Father Savio Siccuan, Benedictine prior at the Monastery of Transfiguration in Malaybalay City, Bukidnon. He cried while giving that homily which was also his own testimony to God’s handiwork in GK that overflowed with His love, kindness, and peace during the Bayani Build Challenge from April 21-26. That homily is quoted “in toto” in the “Peaceful Discourse” thread here.

In the frontier town of Wao, Lanao del Sur, the hopeful peace that is dawning through the establishment of the Darussalam GK Village so intrigued the rebels roving the forested watersheds of the life-sustaining Lake Lanao that they offered to make their own “sweat equity” as investment in a more peaceful life, in a hopeful event that will put an end to their families’ “nomadic lives”. Yes Brod/Sis, working in GK simply makes us forget our internal strife, allows us to savor God’s grace, and uplifts our countrymen with an overpowering sense of hopeful peace in strife-torn Mindanao. Kapatid, that is some hopeful news from our GK: a modest “sweat equity for peace” proposal that promises very valuable peace dividends, indeed.

So, let us bless each other now for the future that we shall separately carve. But let us also prayerfully look forward to a united CFC. GOD BLESS YOU, BROTHER/ SISTER in FFL.

Anonymous said...

To my mind the best way for FFL members, who are not in agreement with what their leaders Padilla n Contreras are doing, that for them to amount to something worthwhile in the eyes of the Lord is for them to detach themselves from the core leadership of Padilla's Playboy Bunnies Group.

Then for them to actively seek the charism that is readily available to them in the B.E.C. program of the Church. All they need to do is they present themselves to their parish priest, declare that they are neither FFL nor CFC, but a new source of evangelizers who will work directly with the Church, then they could have a more Spirit-filled life.

For after all, why spend your time in Padilla's supposed pastoral headship when much of what he does now is directed towards destroying the name of the community they helped build for the past 25 years.

In Novaliches, reports have it that he talked to Bishop Tobias, reportedly seeking sole recognition of FFL in that Diocese. Good thing the good Bishop had the sense to tell him "no" for FFL is just an offshoot of the bigger community of CFC.

jonitanitayturin said...


This excerpt from “AS WE CLIMB STAIRS AND LADDERS: A REJOINDER TO “AS I WRECK MY CHAIR” by Nonong Contreras, May 10, 2008:

“The nobility and godliness of sharing is not the issue here because if you share without ‘giving God, you do not give enough and too little’…The question that may well be asked is if both Messrs. Esposo and Meloto have their priorities right when they excluded giving God first and placed more importance on “being a man for others.” (Italics supplied)

Nonong Contreras’ thoughts seems wanting in depth and meaning. I thought that by being a “man for others” one will have placed God in the first order because He has mandated the love of neighbor as His topmost priority. People trained in the Jesuit mold as “men and women for others” as I suppose Bro. Tony Meloto is, can be sure that the GK approach to social action is an incontrovertible formula for following God’s greatest of commands as one gives the Love of God there.

To purposely overemphasize this point for Nonong Contrears’ sake, I wish to quote this portion of the speech delivered by the then Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Pedro Arrupe, S.J., entitled “Men and Women for Others”, before the Jesuit Alumni of Europe in Valencia, Spain on July 31, 1973:

“Today our prime educational objective must be to form men-and-women-for-others; men and women who will live not for themselves but for God and his Christ - for the God-man who lived and died for all the world; men and women who cannot even conceive of love of God which does not include love for the least of their neighbors; men and women completely convinced that love of God which does not issue in justice for others is a farce.” (Italics supplied)

WillyJ said...

Joni, you hit it on the button. As my YFC Atenista son would say: "Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam --- a person for others --- all for the greater Glory of God".

I am also amused at how he oversimplifies the story of Martha and Mary to prop up Frank Padilla's supposedly right priorities. Martha invited Jesus into their home, we all know that. As the disciples were also with him, there were at least 13 people to prepare food for, and so we can probably sympathize with Martha who had her hands full in the kitchen while Mary just sat there listening to Jesus' teaching. But since Jesus said "Mary chose the better part", that leaves us no doubt about the order of priorities at that specific instance. Why indeed should Martha be upset? There was no indication in the Scriptures that Jesus and his disciples at the home of Mary and Martha were about to be dehydrated from thirst or were about to collapse from hunger. In retrospect, Martha should have joined Mary at the feet of Jesus to listen to his words first, there will be enough time later on to prepare food. Now, if the disciples were about to die from hunger and thirst, that would have been a different story. The better part would have been to prepare food and water first, and Jesus no doubt would have joined forces with Martha and Mary in the preparations. After all, we all know Jesus can multiply loaves and fishes enough to feed 4,000 people or more. The danger of oversimplifying scriptures is normally attributed to not taking the context of the surrounding verses in the chapter and of the entire bible itself. For example, Nonong's other reference to emphasize spirituality is when Jesus said to Peter: "do you love me?..feed my lambs...feed my flock..", but that verse was more of a testimony to Peter's primacy more than anything else. Going back, one should notice that the immediately preceding verses in Luke prior to the story of Martha and Mary's home is actually that of the Good Samaritan. The Parable of the Good Samaritan actually disparages the Priest and the Levite for ignoring the plight of the wounded and half-dead victim lying by the roadside. The pagan Samaritan, of all people, was extolled by Christ with his acts of charity, when he told the disciples "Go and do likewise". It was obvious that extending works of mercy was the better part in this instance. Both the priest and the Levite had ignored the wounded man, and it would have been a greater sin and insult if they had stopped momentarily just to preach to the wounded man and then went on their way afterwards. All these tells me that reducing spirituality and temporal works of mercy to a static and rigid order of priorities irrespective of circumstances, is a gross misunderstanding of the true meaning of loving God and neighbor. I actually see no tension between the two, both should be done, and it is not as if you are under a constant dilemma of prioritizing or choosing one over the other as a measure of godliness, as Nonong would have it.

Balut said...

May I just echo FFL's words, with a couple of minor editions?

"We call on the FFL Leadership,, whose members say they have control over the true charism, to correct Nonong Contreras. We call on Frank Padilla and the others to defend the Church and the hierarchy from such constant verbal abuse. We call on them to protect the hearts and minds of their members, especially the youth, from the vitriolic attacks on the Bishops coming from Nonong in personal emails.

We call upon everyone to pray intently and incessantly for our beloved bishops and priests. And speak up in their defense whenever they are attacked.

God bless and protect us all.



Anonymous said...

Brothers Joni, Willyj, Balut (are you sister?), Others:

Puede ba 'to dito? Di kaya "new agers" yang mga FFL, especially Padilla and Contreras.

Kasi ang philosophy daw nito ay -- that the most important value in all the world is the interest of the self, so that even a "selfless act" must only be motivated by the need to preserve the self. Therefore, such social work as Gawad Kalinga could only be supported to the extent that it promotes self-interest; otherwise, such higher objective like social justice or love of neighbor cannot be in the new ager's order of priority, more so if it places the interest of the self as only secondary.

Jean-Paul Sartre, French philosopher, is in this context a "new ager". For him, "HELL IS OTHER PEOPLE."

Don't you think Padilla and those in FFL -- who "contracted", ("nagkupos"in Bisayan) by limiting their people-environment to those among them who are "close kay God" and would rather have prayer-fellowship among themselves as renewed families than engage in an evangelistic option that is preferentially pro-poor, as GK would have it -- are essentially an embodiment of the love-of-self, "hell-is-other-people", New Age philosophy?

May be worth a try to seriously consider that, in the recent noise about the New Age Monister raised by Padilla and the FFL, perhaps "the pot is calling the keetle black", indeed! That noise was against those who saw through Padilla's and FFL's willful creation of a faction in the Catholic Church that openly supported their SELFISH motives and hypocrisy as MODERN PHARISEES.

Anonymous said...

Yes, 'Hell is Other People' is a catch-phrase to describe the existential philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre. To existentialist like him, "We are what we do..we are radically free to act independently of outside influences. We create our own human nature and values through our free choices."

Existentialism's slogan is "Existence precedes Essence" in contrast to the traditional view of "Essence precedes Existence", according to which we are seen as having a given nature that determines what we are and what our ultimate purpose or value is.

If New Age philosophy promotes and exols absolute freedom of the self, then it can be closely allied with the existentialist philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre?!

WillyJ said...

Brother Anonymous of 18:18 5/25/08,

Yes, it is hurtful being branded as "New-Agers" or "Modern Pharisees" with all its negative connotations, but we certainly wouldn’t want this issue to degenerate into name-calling as others are wont to. Oftentimes we become so passionate in standing up for our Faith that our emotions overcome us when we tend to look at people rather than their actions (I am guilty as well). No one is faultless, and the essence of community must be when we pick up our brothers who stumble, even as we stumble ourselves, that we gain strength from the community. To FFL leaders, let us respect our differences and move on, your insistence on the CFC name is just crazy (there I go again...sorry). We are here in the community not because of our commonalities, but because we are called by the same God to travel the narrow road. I do not really want to sound pontificating, but what we’d rather have is a dispassionate evaluation of issues, where we might be illuminated by them, set our pride aside, humbly accept our faults, allow ourselves to be forgiven, forgive others, and move forwards together on that narrow road, rather than pushing people aside. This is what Faith and Reason is all about.

God bless.

jonitanitayturin said...


Thanks, Bro. Willyj. I feel blessed by your pleasant words while you cheerfully (I think) encourage one and all to toe the narrow line -- relative to that anonymous suggestion for a depraved name-calling that our differences with FFL and Padilla would have been most unfortunately reduced to. Bless you, Brother.

Honestly, some of my entries a few months back were unkind: such as plucking Cicero’s Latin phrases against the plotter Catiline to hopefully “whack” FP and his cohorts to their senses, and suggesting that their sickening use of the words “veering away” and “disobedience” be “galbutin” (bluntly pulled out) from their “tilaok” (throats). I also portrayed Fortes in Fide's deadly rebuttal of Bro Manny Hermano (of FFL) as similar to Manny Pacquiao’s mortal blows, describing the opponent as “lukapa gayud!” (down on his knees and dealt a fatal blow), in a gleeful suggestion that I, too, was coming into the ring, with gloves on to join the fray! I am so sorry for my inexorable war-fighting mood then. I have since learned a lot from the gentle Esther 414/Psalm 1914 who persistently directed every protagonist in this blog to the Way of the Cross...

Although the struggle to have restraint in the midst of the Good Fight for the real CFC is largely personal, I hope you there in FFL do realize that it is a certainly most difficult call to have a good attitude in the face of evil; to humbly take back “belligerent” words and return the drawn swords, as in surrender; and to frustratingly (although only temporarily) rage with all gusto for a fight only to back down in humble conversion, as the sword becomes a Cross, and as the mind is transfixed towards a self-crucifixion, instead of having the hands plunge the sharp sword deeply in the heart of the “enemy”.

Personally, I also find it most shameful that I could at one moment be some “war freak” and in another, be a direct opposite thereof, calling for humility and forgiveness, depending on the attacks that are hurled.

Brethren in FFL, we have to tell you about the “human face” of this battle that you have created in our community; about our internal struggles to be “holy” (yes, indeed, Brother, that was also a rare calling on our side, by CD, too!) even as we are hurt and bleeding; about our waxing and waning in trying to be charitable as our relationships are broken up; about our endeavor to be reasonable; and most of all, about our struggle to be humble and forgiving along the “narrow road”.

Willyj is right. No labeling now, which will only make us sin some more. Yet we are all assured this: TRUTH is coming out in all its majesty, for OUR (that's right, Brethren in FFL, you and us together) TOTAL VICTORY. YES, WE HAVE DEEP FAITH THAT THIS IS SO.

Thank you, too, CD.

Sad GK volunteer said...

garnet said...

I just want to let you know that the contribution of the Pharma co to the GK was not monetary in nature;

Because of the involvement of their company, 800 of their employees got inspired and gave personal time to do work in GK.

During their Christmas party, the hat was passed around among the employees and they raised Php500,000 for GK.

I just know that they are very hurt when their partnership was terminated nd that one employee commented that they will just look for another project for their CSR where their intentions will not be suspect.

Now tell me... didnt we just lose the chance to evangelize these 800 employees? Isn't this the greater scandal?

Not only a scandal, but as a regular GK volunteer I find this so sad, almost heartbreaking.

I wish I could tell them that we in GK are so thankful to them for what they have given, and that this is not what we wanted...

...I'm so sad that we have unintentionally hurt them in this way because of Frank & Co's constant attacks.

When I think of the sharings of so many of our partners following time in the, it's so tragic that there work with us has been affected like this.

Anonymous said...

Kapatid na Garnett:

Makes us really wonder how could Frank et al have overlooked the fact that all companies look toward a "moral obligation" to share their profits with the community, through a CSR work.

Surely, Frank could not have missed PBSP and its corporate members!?

Well, it is a big, big lesson for everyone about being gullible with those having a messianic complex.

There's a lot of stories of "charismatic" people allegedly receiving some "heavenly" voices and leading their followers to their tragic deaths. There's a folklore about a pre-war shaman in Bukidnon whose followers starved to death waiting for some mountain to open, which he said would lead them to their eternal joy with Magbabaya (God).

There are tales of tragic ends to narrow-minded followers and prideful leaders, oral traditions and literature show the world. So, there must always be a balance of faith and reason.

How do we deal with our consciences relative to the Pfizer donors who felt hurt by CFC's discontinuance of a cooperative effort following Padilla's unfounded accusations?

We pray they will find more "balanced", reasonable, joyful, and less hypocritical partners. We also have lessons on how to derail a most successful religious endeavor like our own CFC community.

Anonymous said...

We have a member in our household who heads a local branch of a commercial bank. She couldn't believe that FP and his ilk could be so stupid (sorry, but I have to use this word as it was) to consider Pfizer's donation, to house the poor at GK sites, as tainted just because one or more of their subsidiaries are involved in the manuacture of contraceptives. She remembered very well her college classes in comparative religion which highlighted respect for other people's beliefs.

You will really believe it "Dodo" Garnett, if we can call you by this endearing term in our dialect, that that HH member was speechless and so aghast at the irrational Padilla - for, indeed the GK was not promoting nor selling contraceptives or abortiacients, not at all!!! So, how could Padilla and "his" SD Bp Reyes (him again1) be so blinded to insist that there was scandal because Pfizer offered to help build houses for the poor? I say, for release of my really, really, really suppressed feeling: sstttuuuuuuupppppiiiiiddddd!!!!!

That was to let off steam, brothers and sisters. I hope you understand how I feel. Good day!

Anonymous said...

I suggest that the probable heretical teachings of Padilla be subject of an exploratory study for a graduate thesis in theology, philosophy, or relatd field.

For neutrality, solicitations for support from pharma companies manufacturing contraceptives will be discouraged. However, Padilla can lend all this books, write-ups, CDs, etc., that are in his custody for the in-depth study.

Meantime, I want to prejudge that PADILLA has become heretic by his ill-definition of a 'founder' of CFC and keeper of its so-called charism. I also want to judge that, since he broke up CFC twice already, his person can be accused of schism in the Caholtic religion.

Anonymous said...


It is becoming to be a big paradox that very few of those who are moneyed, or who have alternative "gods" to rely on like material wealth, stable work, or profitable business genuinely hunger for God. I don't want to sound judgmental about people who have earned a lot - monetarily or otherwise - but those who come to CLPs like what we have are so ordinary people, those who have perhaps nothing else left but to hope in a God, and those who refuse our invitation saying they are "not interested" are those we hoped could come to witness God's goodness and perhaps share their "wealth" with the less endowed.

Sometimes, it appears like those who are only fence-sitters or bystanders have so much more material resources which they are unwilling to share or part with... May they be unlike those who can afford to think and criticize an act like Pfizer's giving to the poor as scandalous? To me, they can have the "objectivity" to think and pass judgment on a generous act, because they are already so endowed to be fence-sitting.

Thus, when one attains success of material bounty or a measurable return that assures of a stable future, may FENCE-SITTING be a virtue?

I just muse about those who have no interest in joining CLPs because their other interests pull them away (more often these are materially-driven) or because they would have the luxury to fence-sit, and critically comment a generous act of helping the poor, like that of Pfizer employees, as "scandalous" because the same company they work for has a subsidiary engaged in, or is itself directly, manufacturing contraceptives.

Just thinking...

Anonymous said...

A friend remembers the indfatigable Bishop Claver, S.J., patiently arrange the stones at the side of the Bishop's convent in Malaybalay, Bukidnon, some years past, the same image recalled of him digging out a large piece of stone that he would use to line in circle the base of a bamboo poles growing in the school grounds of a Jesuit mission. That was the down-to-earth Igorot gardener, the stocky pipe-smoking intellectual of a priest, the bishop who was to champion Catholic social action in Northern Mindanao during the Martial law yars.

Likewise, I remember at the Ateneo de Cagayan final-typing a letter of another Jesuit thanking the Rev. Father Bernas, S.J. for his strong and 'high-minded' legal opinions, especially coming to the former's defense in response to an editorial carton disparaging his criticism of the military's extravagant use and display of firearms during funerals..

And now...these two respected Jesuit workers and intellectuals, coming into the CFC and GK controversy being clearly the "voices of faith and reason".


Anonymous said...


That proposed graduate study on Padilla's possible heresies may give too much credit for a foolish minf and not in cosonance with reason. Why not a study on his connection with Bishop Reyes? Or,whynot a psychoanalytic study based on the initial inputs of Dr.Cabuquit there?

Anonymous said...

We believe God works in mysterious ways (FAITH) and we know that we can only do so much by the faculties and resources available to us (REASON). But what could be GOD's reason for making it hard for us to evangelize the more-or-less-self-sustained, self-contained, stable, moderately well-off individuals?

May they also be referred to as "saints" or Christians who refuse to help, so we may still lack sleep thinking that we have to make do with having less in only getting the "poor" to our CLPs because they (them richer or more well-provided ones)were less interested?

I can't help recalling the sadness in the heart of a brother who heads the service team for a CLP, when he run through txt messages from friends he invited to come: "not interested", "have bought a new car and is on a road-test so will not be able to make it, but will try the next time...", etc.

Just raising a voice that may have to do with faith for various reasons...

Anonymous said...


Bishop Claver talks about the sensible questions from the Bontoc/ Ifugao village philosopher who even knew Latin!

Well, our CLP Team Leader had to whisper in some reverential tone that it was not a wonder that in Jesus' time, those who listened and followed Jesus were very ordinary men of the streets and the farms... And rich men? They also heard, but sought audience with Jesus privately, because even as their spirits longed for something good that he was talking about, their material, worldly reputations required shielding.

And with all this, we resolve to PRAY SOME MORE AND MORE...because somehow, part of the constraint is the worldview developed from inside of each of us, of me, most especially. And if I give love? Oh that is greatest, my friend.

CD, it was great to blog, and it was a great learning here in this post spearheaded by the article of the Most Rev. Bishop Emeritus, Monsignor Francisco F. Claver, S.J.

WillyJ said...

"There is a condition worse than blindness, and that is, seeing something that isn't there."
- Thomas Hardy

I invite our brethren still confused, to revisit and seriously reassess the major issues. It is almost a year since the split, the cloud of confusion has long subsided, giving way for a clear and objective view. The salient facts have appeared and are all out in the open, thanks to CD and all the defenders in this blog. We should all then be reconciled IN TRUTH, guarding ourselves against taking the wrong side of the argument just because the perceived adversary has taken the right side. After all, there is only one true adversary, against which we should all put on the Armor of God.

The issues can be restated as briefly as possible, as there is nothing novel to expound anymore. Everything has been covered in one way or another through various posts and comments on this blog. Permit me to just summarize the points which has already been articulated in various posts and comments.

The heart of the matter boils down to 6 major points.


1. CFC(IC) disobeyed the bishops by holding elections last year against their strong recommendations.

This act of pushing through with the elections is not equivalent to disobeying the Church, as the strong recommendation of the three bishops (Bps Reyes, Lagdameo & Villegas) do not constitute an infallible Magisterial directive, and the bishops never intended it so. While the IC respectfully considered the recommendation and conveyed its grave concerns to the bishops against postponing the elections, the final decision of pushing through with the elections is in keeping with the Church's principle of subsidiarity. It is also in keeping with the CFC statutes which states in 9.321: "The Spiritual Adviser's competence is in doctrinal and liturgical matters, and will not involve organizational matters." The CFC election of July 2007 is a legitimate CFC election in accordance with its Vatican Statutes, as well as in accordance with the decision of the majority BOE. The leadership of CFC regrets having disappointed the bishops recommendations done with good intentions, while it respectfully explained and thereby acted in a legitimate manner that is deemed for the best interests and common good of the community. Throughout all this, CFC affirms the conviction to remain in harmony with the Church, as exemplified by one of its major themes: "One with the Catholic Church".

2. CFC(GK) entered into immoral partnerships with companies that promote contraceptives.

CFC IC has explained the partnership with pharmaceutical companies in that the partnerships in question entailed no formal cooperation in the advocacy of contraceptives, and that CFC remains steadfast in its prolife advocacy. This stance culminated in the March 11, 2008 letter to the IC by Cardinal Rylco of the Vatican's Pontifical Council of the Laity, which states : "It was also important that you have realized that much scandal and confusion is being provoked by the fact that Couples For Christ has received funds from pharmaceutical companies producing contraceptives. We appreciated the explanation on your part and your sincere willingness to correct this." While the IC has maintained that the partnerships were done in good faith, it has subordinated its arguments and readily complied with a public declaration and apology in the newspapers, in formal obedience with Cardinal Rylko's urging. It is worth noting that the liceity of accepting donations for a worthy cause from the moral standpoint of non-complicity in evil together with the ethical principle of double-effect has been upheld by various prominent clerics, the latest of which is represented by the CBCP column of Bishop Claver.

3. CFC(GK) has veered away from the charism and purpose of CFC by overemphasizing the social over the spiritual, thus, CFC needs to be restored to its original charism.

While CFC has constantly denied having "veered away" from the charism and mission of CFC, it remains a fact that any charge of veering away can only be creditably accounted to the entity with the proper authority. For CFC, as a recognized national and international association of the Faithful, the only proper authority that can pass this judgment would be the Vatican through the Pontifical Council of The Laity (PCL). This is also emphasized as CBCP has recognized CFC as a national association of the Faithful since 1996, and that recognition likewise remains to date. The fact that the Vatican hasn't withdrawn recognition, is de facto proof that CFC's charisms are genuine and being used properly, including its charisms of uplifting the poorest of the poor.

4. Frank Padilla is the Founder and Keeper of the charism based on the ecclesiology of new movements. Where Frank is, there is the authentic CFC. He has every right to lead the restoration of CFC to its original charism.

The fact is that when Frank Padilla joined CFC in the first CLP, CFC was already founded. He may have figured prominently during the formative years of CFC, which leads him to claim that he is the founder and of CFC based on the ecclesiology of new movements. That by itself, questionable or otherwise, should have no definitive bearing to CFC's proper use of charisms, yet Frank Padilla relates that being the CFC founder carries with it the distinction of being the keeper of the charism, and where the charism lies, there lies the authentic CFC. The corollary to Frank's statement is that wherever he goes, CFC's charism follows him, and since he has left CFC and formed his own CFC-FFL, the original CFC is left without an authentic charism. The Church leaders thru the Vatican, not Frank or any laity for that matter, has the sole responsibility to judge the "genuineness and proper use" of CFC's charisms. Frank may have a personal charism for all its worth, but his charism does not include the authority to judge whether CFC under the IC has lost all its charisms by virtue of his leaving it.

5. FFL has prior right to the CFC-FI name, it is legally entitled to reinstate CFC-FI in favor of CFC-FFL, considering that CFC(GK) has veered away from its Charism.

Frank invokes the charge of 'veering-away" to justify reinstatement of the CFC-FI name, at the questionable premise that he is the proper judge of CFC's performance as a lay community of the faithful. It is best at this point to quote an anomymous legal analysis posted elsewhere in this blog which says "The fact is that CFC-FI does not have any rights anymore. They have all been transferred by the board to CFC-GMFI in 1994. When CFC-FI's registration was revoked in 2003, it lost its juridic personality and all its corporate powers and ceased to exist as a corporation. CFC-GMFI's ownership of all assets, rights and goodwill then became absolute. CFC-GMFI has been exercising this right exclusively for 18 years. Laches has worked in favor of CFC-GMFI." It appears that this legal matter has ample precedence in jurisprudence, as pointed out further by the citation of an actual Supreme Court case reference. The propriety and legal basis of CFC-FFL's SEC petition now lies for the courts to rule upon, while the burden of proof now lies with all the CFC-FFL petitioners, officers, and yet to be named respondent-members.

6. CFC-(GK) and CFC-FFL may co-exist, provided that CFC-(GK) strives not to let go of what it truly means to be CFC.

Frank through CFC-FFL is not simply forming another group. His words and actions attest that CFC-FFL is bent on arrogating the identity of CFC by its persistent charge of "veering away", by their contention that they never left CFC, and by their insistence on using the CFC appendage to its name as CFC-FFL, at the same time that its organization maintains identical structures with the organization it left behind. Frank Padilla's own official statement that "CFC-(GK) and CFC-FFL may co-exist, provided that CFC-(GK) strives not to let go of what it truly means to be CFC", reveals that he has accorded unto himself the setting of conditions for the use of the CFC name, a posture that is clearly unwarranted inasmuch as he is bereft of any authority to set conditions for the performance of CFC and its name use. As CFC-FFL is a breakaway group, it becomes absurd to set conditions for the main group it has already left, much more if the main group is larger and retains legitimate recognition by both standing ecclesiastical and secular authorities. On the other hand, the CFC under the IC is under a just cause to protect its identity and name, as it is the duly recognized group currently recognized by Church authority as living out the Vatican statutes under which it has been recognized. There is no compelling reason to form a separate group with an identical name and structure which by consequence breeds animosity, grave confusion, and therefore harm to the Church. Indeed, Vatican II's Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity states: "As long as the proper relationship is kept to Church authorities, the laity have the right to found and run such associations and to join those already existing. Yet the scattering of energies must be avoided. This waste occurs when new associations are projects are promoted without a sufficient reason, or if antiquated associations or methods are retained beyond their period of usefulness". Ch 4,n19.
Truth, by itself cannot set us free. It is the willingness to know, learn, and act out the truth that eventually sets us free.

jonitanitayturin said...


Brother Willy, I believe it is very, very thoughtful and brilliant of you to summarize all the major issues concerned so far, and appropriately post them here as a continuing meditation in Faith and Reason. Having quickly reviewed most of the entries here, I feel like coming home to a cool drink, and taking a good, carefree rest.

It really feels good to be here, CD. Para bang refilling station natin ito dito...ang mga warriors ay children pa man din pala...

Yeah...and it seems like after the Anniversary, such "hitches" as the reported maligning of TM’s well-attended (SRO) lecture at the Ateneo, can just be considered "insignificant disturbances". Kasama na dito and pag-iisip na puede segurong magsama ang CFC at FFL papunta sa pag santa ng malala na seguro na "moral scourge" na posibleng gumapang na sa inmost parts of our beings...Well, di na rin siguro bale, because the CFC's institutional effort (through the IC and UMC/Ugnayan) to confront that sad part of our history with LNP, to seek the LNP founders in order to have their sides heard and/or read, and to respectfully give them credit or acknowledgment...all those sincere efforts did merit for us in CFC a good healing as they brought fraternal love to our founders in LNP. Now, we may provide moral support to usher FFL's "backward integration" and healing also with LNP, so that its share of the moral scourge will be expunged, too...

I think the BIG ONE came and blew out with the typhoon, revealing the majesty of the ORIGINAL CFC standing out most triumphantly – in celebration, in attendance, in fellowship, in prayer, in joy, in everything! WOW, indeed!!!

Here’s some additional thoughts about them...

The battle turned and the original CFC won!!!

The turning point unfolded on June 21, 2008, when thousands of rain-drenched CFC faithful: marched under threat of “Frank” the storm to lift high the banners of love and unity of families 27 years into the CFC renewal movement, celebrated the biggest Lord’s Day ever, and partook of the solemnity of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

The denouement followed when Bro. Joe Tale, together with the throng of 50,000 CFC at the sprawling Luneta Park, belted the most inspiring song to “walk throw a storm…through the rain”, as the Holy Angels thereafter ushered them all safely home before Frank the tempest came to and hit Metro Manila and Central Luzon very hard, including the FFL’s mockery of “CFC 27th Anniversary” the following day (it seemed they did not have a good attendance even if under a rain-proof stadium.)

It is now the dawning of a new morning in the life of original CFC under the leadership of the IC. With the storm gone and the skies having cleared, it has become clearer still that the mainstream CFC has stood fast, held on tightly to the original structure, which one “freak” of a leader abandoned because he wanted to restore it (for imagined defects)!

We pray that those who walked away and left CFC “as a matter of principle” will be able start with a new beginning…forgetting the past behind, forgetting the name CFC, and beginning to live as true evangelizers by accepting the challenges of the new standard they have designed, the emblem of FFL – FOUNDATION FOR FAMILY AND LIFE. Walk on, dear old brethren...With Faith! God be with you….

[Just curious about the FFL followers: Did they really think it would come to this? That they would revive a revoked name just to make sure they could defend their separation from CFC and ridicule their brethren? Did they not want to unite with their “original” brethren as soon as possible, and not to stoke the fire anymore by whipping up an old, discarded name? It is a pathetic scene, which I cannot, for the sanity and freshness now abounding in the air, imagine the once-revered Frank Padilla to refurbish himself as the so-called "real founder and bearer of the CFC charism"...What life, what customs...O tempora, o mores!]

WillyJ said...

Hi John, and thanks for that.
I couldn't imagine it as well, even as we are trained to attribute good intentions first. The unfolding events and continuing statements continue to elicit jaw-dropping amazement. Take that "Macias doctrine". Haay.
[Quousque tandem abutere, Frank, patientia nostra]

Anonymous said...

To all brothers and sisters,

When I posted that entry on charisms last month, I sincerely thought I saw what FAP was after. He wanted to be reinstalled as the head of CFC. Since he was not re-elected, he was left with no other choice but to find other ways to become the head again. He seems to have two strategic objectives:

(a)Get the real IC-led CFC to be declared as false
(b)Get FFL to be declared as the real one.

If he achieves these objectives he becomes the head again. Is it pride, as many have stated, that motivates FAP? Or is it a messianic complex? His pronouncements seem to carry an undertone of "this is true because I said so" and "if you are not with me, you are veering away from the church".

ACT 1. Achieve objective (a) above.

a1. Discredit the IC-led CFC. Accuse it of "veering away" and being disobedient to the church.

a2. Target GK especially because it is the most successful and most visible pillar of CFC. Because GK has become too successful and internationally known for it to be destroyed, it must be marginalized by reducing it to mere social action. If GK can be separated from CFC, so much the better.

a3. Make the public think that CFC has lost its charism.

If these 3 steps are properly implemented, the result would be a weak and ineffectual CFC with confused and angry members. This would further serve to convince everyone that FAP is right, that the real charism is where FAP is.

ACT 2. Achieve objective (b)

b1. Wrest, by all means possible, the CFC name away from the real CFC and give it to FFL. Why should they follow what Bishop Reyes said about FFL starting as a diocesan group and later evovling into a national organization and much later into an international one? There is no reason to wait that long for Vatican recognition. All that has to be done is get the name away from the real CFC, have it declared as FFL's and, hopefully, get a short-cut to Vatican recognition.

b2. Once objective (a) has been achieved, it should be very easy for FAP to take center stage and call the lost flock to himself.

ACT 3. Enter FAP, the hero, savior and messiah. The real CFC, confused and in disarray, bereft of a name and Vatican recognition, will have no choice but to seek re-unification under the banner and undisputed leadership of FAP. FFL then, as a name, gets dissolved and the whole thing is once again CFC, restored, re-purified, reformed and re-FAPed.

Last June 14, in FAP's statement entitled "The Couples for Christ Name", a one-sentence paragraph stood out:

"I extend my hand of peace to my brethren in CFC-GK".

When I read that, I resolved to read the blog entries since then and await what FAP's and FFL's next move would be. That Fr. Tulabing would voluntarily place himself in the crossfire was unexpected. That FFL would write such a response to Tito Tony's speech was just FFL running true to form. I could have asked myself where the extended hand of peace was. But then again, FAP also did that last year when he officially declared "we are at peace."

I could speculate that the explicit statements of peace and peace offerings were just lip service. Or I could also conclude that they were deliberate deceptions, one hand offering peace while the other holds a knife. Based on his comments, Fr. Tulabing may unwittingly be being used as part of the "knife" hand.

I confess I have lost respect for FAP. Where is the holiness that was so pervasive in his writings? I confess, too, that I sometimes think that what he is doing is sabotaging himself. Is he possibly one of those psychological types who, at the peak of success, sabotage themselves, perhaps because of a fear of success or the playing out of a guilt complex? For instance, he complains that he is being maligned. However, it is plain to see that his hurts came mostly from self-inflicted wounds.

In messianic fervor, FAP seems to be exhibiting recurrences of past history. He engineerd the split from LNP. And now he did it again with CFC. Except that this time, according to him, he did not split from CFC, it was CFC that was split into two, creating two CFCs. Last year he declared "we are at peace" and proceeded to do the complete opposite. Last month he did it again. It is really not hard to see that deception is an essential element in his actions. Is this deception a recurrence of the "land scam" event?

How far have they gone apropos their objectives? I don't believe they have achieved any of them. They're still trying. FAP may have thought they've won, hence the "hand of peace" thingy. But Fr. Tulabing and the disillusioned Macias tell us, they're far from it.

So what are we, as CFCers, to do? Faced with such obvious, deliberate and systematic attack, how should we react? We have voluntarily taken up the challenge to defend and our leadership had cautioned us to stick to the issues and to be christian in our discussions; our rules of engagement so to speak.

While I have no moral authority to tell you all to refrain from name-calling, FAP-bashing or from being vehement in trying to set Fr. Tulabing right, I do want to share with you some thoughts I feel are relevant for all of us. I want to tell you mga kapatid, that we should do who we are.

And who are we? First and foremost, as CFC, we are FOR CHRIST. I've been reflecting on the following passages:

Jn 14:23-24: "...If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him. He who does not love Me does not keep My words ..."

Mt 12:30: "He who is not with me is against me; and he who does not gather with me scatters."

In Mt 13:24-30, the Lord taught the parable of the weeds among the wheat. In this parable, the weeds were allowed to grow with the wheat until the day of harvest, where they are bundled and burned.

Mt 15:11 teaches us that it is not what enters the mouth that defiles us but what comes out of it.

Mga kapatid, those who do not keep His word do not love the Lord. Those who do not gather with Him scatters. He will let these "weeds" grow among us until the time of harvest. We have a great choice to make here. Focus on loving the Lord or becoming weeds ourselves.

Let us be first to uphold our love for the Lord. Let us gather with Him. Let us be FOR Him.

We do this in all our actions and words. I once talked about the orange juice concept here. Orange juice comes out when an orange is squeezed because that's what is inside. Mga kapatid, we must cultivate a deep and abiding love for the Lord inside us.

"In these communities apostolic and charitable activity belongs to the very nature of the religious life, seeing that it is a holy service and a work characteristic of love, entrusted to them by the Church to be carried out in its name. Therefore, the whole religious life of their members should be inspired by an apostolic spirit and all their apostolic activity formed by the spirit of religion. Therefore in order that their members may first correspond to their vocation to follow Christ and serve Him in His members, their apostolic activity must spring from intimate union with Him. Thus love itself towards God and the neighbor is fostered." - Perfectae Caritatis

Our actions must be to gather with Him and our words must be of love.
And since we are also known by our fruits, let us vigilantly watch what we are causing to come about. Defending CFC does not mean we become like our detractors.

Our language must differ from theirs. Where they twist and spin we must be clear and truthful. Let us always present the whole truth. For when all the information about something is not shown, the meaning is often changed.

Our methods must differ from theirs. Where there is deception and lies, we must be openly honest and truthful. Let's stick to the issues and facts. Where they accuse without presenting evidence, let us always show the evidence upon which we based our conclusions. Let us hide nothing. Where they sow confusion and scatter, let us clarify in order to gather.

The tone of our statements must differ from theirs. Ours must be loving, respectful, generous, forgiving but firm. We must never be spiteful. Forgiving does not only mean absolution of the error. If it were so the sacrament of reconciliation would not include penance. Forgiveness includes correction. And we must have the patience and love to do this as long as the other keeps committing the same sin. For how often must we forgive? Seventy times seven says the scripture. So even if FFL repeats the same accusations over and over again, let's give them the same response. Kapatid, let us not get tired in forgiving the same sins over and over again. After all, our Lord does exactly the same thing with each of us.

Mga Kapatid, what is at stake are our own hearts and minds. If we react to them the way they do, what does that make us? Why should we give them the power to determine who we are? Kung gusto nila tayong inisin, tapos naiinis din tayo, then we have given them the power to determine who we are. You can say, they manipulated us but the truth would still be that we allowed them to do it. So let's not give them those easy wins. Let us ever be who we are no matter what they say or do.

Christ said that he who loves Him will keep His word. Keeping His word determines the actions of a true Christian. What the Lord is saying is NOT that we should love each other first so we can be with the Lord. It's the other way around. He's saying we should love Him first and out of this love, when this love reigns in our hearts, its natural overflow will make us love each other and can do nothing but keep His word.

We are families in the Holy Spirit renewing the face of the earth. We are Couples for Christ. Let us do WHO we are.


Deo Volente said...

Nicely said, TE! God bless you for all your wisdom!

WillyJ said...

TE, you said all the right words.

When Frank said in his June 14 letter : "I extend my hand of peace to my brethren in CFC-GK", it was also accompanied by the statement "With regard to our brethren in CFC-GK, we do not intend to do to them what they have been doing to us. For the sake of peace and eventual reconciliation, we do not intend to prevent them from using the name 'CFC', for as long as they strive to not let go of what it means to be truly CFC."

So it becomes pretty much clear that he initially intends to break CFC into two entities, CFC-FFL which is the "restored" CFC with the "authentic" charism headed by him, and "CFC-GK", which will be reduced to a social action movement which may use the name CFC, but only under the terms of his conditions. This is the first phase and would marginalize "CFC-GK". Since "CFC-GK" will be operating under his conditions, eventually, he will force GK to drop its CFC association, whereas CFC-FFL will drop its FFL tag, which completes his "restoration" act. ACT-3 in TE's analysis would now come into being, with FAP emerging as the savior and hero. Wonderful storyline, huh?

The only thing is, FAP has indulged into a lot of wishful thinking when he visualized that, and he
probably felt a false sense of victory with that June 5 SEC order - the icing on the cake of his grand masterplan. Now it appears like a gross miscalculation on his part, since from all legal angles, FAP's tactic to reinstate CFC-FI now looks like it will blow up in their faces. The SEC order is not yet final and executory, but regardless of whether FFL pursues to formalize their SEC petition with the submission of additional documents, FFL is already liable in court proceedings just by the initial act of submitting the SEC petition with questionable documents. When a definitive legal ruling comes in favor of CFC-GMFI, Frank will have no choice but to drop the CFC name, and with it, his dreams of "restoration". The bishops will go along with a legal order arising out of this, as Tagbilaran Bishop Leonardo Medroso, chair of the Episcopal Commission on Canon Law, was reported as saying "it was a good thing the groups had sought legal clarification on the right to use the CFC name to settle the issue with finality." I think it is only a matter of time, and as IC said: WE WILL PREVAIL.

Actually, I see it to mean: God always prevails. So, in the meantime, as TE says, Let us do WHO we are. We are Couples For Christ,

We remain Couples For Christ.

jonitanitayturin said...


Brod TE, let me second all of Brother Willy’s felicitations on your prognosis here. I did have a hunch that it was you who did that 7-page (I guess) profound discourse on CFC charism, which became our HH’s special topic (I humorously likened them in FFL na “pasaway” as “human doings” thereafter).

Yes, I can imagine FP obliquely making a “sungkit” of (hook to pluck) GK so that he offers it as a “gift” to say, Bp Villegas, while… Taraann… he sheds off his FFL cloak, steps into the GK-less CFC, and oversees the restoration process. Meantime, perhaps the Church sees through GK’s integration into its regular social action work…All these may have worked perfectly well, until I say in the lingo of literary criticism, an intervention occurred, “deux ex machina”. I don’t want to say it was the handiwork of God that revealed the “evil” in FP’s plans, but obviously some superhuman force intervened to recast the story FP wanted to climax in GK’s being yanked out of CFC.

Relatedly, I am honestly uncomfortable with the relative silence of the hierarchy in the matter of preventing Padilla from appropriating the CFC name, unlike what was decisively done with “Serviam” (which was not allowed to use the ID of its parent-organization).

A commenter at CBCP News uncannily speculates that FP accused CFC of veering away from its vision and mission because his vision was focused on the color of money (that was imagined could flow in favor of GK?). This “DOLLAR VISION” could have motivated(?) Bp Villegas to support FP and draft the proposal to take out GK - may this explain the said omerta(?). Once again, it is the usually liberal -minded, evenhanded, and activist Jesuits who are saving the day, providing CFC with a neutral forum to advance the cause of GK, as TM was able to unload his heart out about living (and dying) a devout Catholic through giving out Christ in GK. Having that “Jesuit platform” also tempers any further prejudice this impertinence can hope to beat the "living daylights" out of the clearly wayward, and "pasaway", too, members of the hierarchy.

By the way, I am sorry that I could not give you any more information or “explanation” about the so-called “collective guilt” of CFC which FP said was reason for their resignation from CFC-IC last year. I only quoted it from him and related it to an Anonymous’ speculation about a “moral scourge”. .. May be interesting to connect these concepts to the “dollar vision”, though.

Well… my best to all of you there, too, especially CD and Deo. GOD BLESS.

Anonymous said...

Joni, WillJ, Deo - this is for you, kindred spirits in search of the truth...

FAP's Semantic Obfuscation

"...we do not intend to prevent them from using the name 'CFC', for as long as they strive to not let go of what it means to be truly CFC..." Classic FAP? Clever words can easily backfire and you can find yourself with your foot in your mouth.


1. It has enough ambiguity to be construed as a threat. But since he hasn't taken any steps to make good the threat, it becomes an admission on his part that CFC has, in his view, not let go of what it means to be truly CFC. He practically admits that CFC has not lost any charisms or veered away. And he can't explain that away as bluster either. Because if he does, he proves to everyone that he's all talk and no walk. Catch 22.

2. "not let go of what it means to be truly CFC" is the same as "remain true to what it means to be CFC". Why add another level of abstraction? Why not just say "remain true to CFC"? Is the meaning behind CFC more important than CFC itself? There is only one area I know of where the added level of abstraction is warranted. In law one must be aware of the letter and the spirit of the law. This is because the law enacted impacts the whole country and no man has enough wisdom to cover everything in the letter of the law. So the rule is that whenever the letter of the law is vague the spirit of the law provides guidance. That is, what the law was meant for, what it was intended to do. This is what I meant by added abstraction.

By phrasing it the way he did, FAP obfuscates. Without defining what this "meaning of CFC" is, he imposes the requirement of being true to it. I wonder if he himself knows what he is saying. Consider a parallel statement "...not let go of what it means to be truly Filipino". Doesn't it mean the same if I had said "...not let let go of being a Filipino"? Don't both statements say the same thing?

In such cases, the meaning of something can be equivalent to that something but always the two are inseparable. The meaning always follows the object. Without one you cannot have the other.

Aha! Eureka! Since FAP, obviously, cannot say "not let go of being CFC" without accusing himself of the error (he, in fact, left CFC) he was forced to add the abstraction level of "meaning". It made it sound nice and profound but totally vague.

He did, however, get something right. CFC is something to be.

And so we are. We are CFC. To be CFC is to embody everything CFC stands for. It is not to the meaning behind CFC that we have to be true. It is for us, as CFC, as tried and true Catholics, as a community of love, as people committed to Christ, to give meaning to CFC. The meaning behind CFC is a result of each of us practicing our charisms; of each of us upholding the truths of our faith; of each of us being faithful to our mission, vision and statutes and of each of us building the Church of the Home and the Church of the Poor. If we are all Pro-God, Pro-Family, Pro-Life and Pro-Poor then we are CFC and give meaning to CFC. And if we all submit to the leadership of the International Council, we give CFC the meaning of loyalty and obedience.

See, Frank knows all of this. But he cannot possibly subscribe to that previous paragraph. So he referred to a vague and undefined "what it means to be truly CFC". And ended up missing the point and practically admitting that CFC has not veered away.

Like I said, if you're too clever you can end up with your foot...

Ever wonder "what it means to be truly FFL"?


jonitanitayturin said...

TE...IT IS ALL THE RIGHT WORDS (as in Willy’s)

Brod TE, in fact wala na akong masabi pa (I have nothing more to add) about your analysis of FAP’s obfuscation. If you imagine a person humming while reading, you can see me smile as I sway to the perfect beat and meaning of the words you stitched, my head moving up and down in warm agreement. I eagerly wait (as I earnestly pray, too) for the response from FAP or his ‘minions” so they discard the “straitjacket” they’ve woven around themselves by their very pronouncements. I also highly anticipate the sequel to the disaggregate analysis of FAP’s contentions at the highest, purest level of intellectual, tasteful discourse (puro utak doon, hew!).

I now post here my reaction to John Nery’s article in relation to Willy’s comments (I made this before reading your entry, Brod.)


Friends, with joy I lift this excerpt that may ascribe the musical scores on CFC and GK in “ultra high Jesuit fidelity”, and the heavenly angels rendering them dream-like melodies in Faith and Reason:

“On the conflict tearing the Couples for Christ movement apart… The Church’s light cavalry, the Jesuits…have been very much on the side of Tony Meloto and his social apostolate…the alignment is explicit, as in an op-ed piece written by Bishop Emeritus Francisco Claver…They literally stood on the same side of the stage. Meloto and Fr. Bienvenido Nebres, Ateneo de Manila’s president, were keynote speakers at the recent Ateneo alumni convention in Chicago .” -- John Nery Philippine Daily Inquirer First Posted 00:07:00 07/15/2008

Willy, I must relish being one-sided here (by the way I don’t want to mix this issue with that of Pader Tulabing…)

The other side of course is Mr. Nery’s personal view that in our current conflict, the bishops were right to seek to honor the “original charism” of CFC. And I agree with you, it is specious and immaterial (for him/them) to focus on it because CFC has always practiced its genuine, original charism, proof of which is its retention of the Vatican recognition despite the latter’s awareness of the conflict.

Oh, and the Light Brigade, yeah...they have normally pushed things and circumstances to the limits... beyond what can be... ad majorem dei gloriam (for the greater glory of God)... the same underlying force that tests the limits of TM’s – now all of CFC’s – “Catholicity”.


WillyJ said...

Guys, watch out for the latest addition to FFL’s sparse verbal armory: "the errors of liberation theology".
It appears that a confidential critique of TM’s speech by a Catholic apologist has inadvertently found its way to FFL, and they are now gleefully blasting it off. Read on:


First, disclaimer from the author (Mr. Carlos Palad, a Catholic apologist)

"Dear all:

"It has come to my attention that my [critique of] the speech of Tony Meloto in Ateneo has been forwarded [from a confidential mailing list] to the CFC-FFL of Frank Padilla, which has mass e-mailed my post to their supporters as well as to CFC members in order to defame the CFC-International Council.

"Now, because of the indiscretion of that mailing list member, the CFC-FFL is gleefully using MY GOOD NAME and is hiding behind MY REPUTATION in order to bring down Tony Meloto and the CFC International Council.

"As I took pains to point out in my original posting, it was NOT my intention to bring down Tony Meloto. Yes, he does have some theological errors IMHO, but these do not erase his dedication to service and his love for the poor. In pointing out certain weaknesses in his speech it was never my intention to denigrate his service, nor cast aspersions on his good intentions.

"I am ready to stand by my words and to face like a man whatever controversy comes my way, but it grieves me that my words are now being used in favor of a group (the CFC-FFL) that I have not ceased to warn people against."


Here's the forwarded (and supposedly confidential) critique:

Tony Meloto is a great man, and his deep love for the poor shines through. There is no denying his passion for our country, and his patriotism is something we would do well to imitate.

However, this speech of his only shows how deep he has fallen into the errors of liberation theology.

The errors can be seen in the following quotes:

Bishop Francisco Claver, SJ., comments on the reluctance before of the Church to address this issue in his new book The Making of a Local Church.

This is the classic criticism that the liberals have of the pre-Vatican II Church: that it allegedly lacked a social conscience. Those who know church history know that Catholic charity and social works were much more extensive and active prior to Vatican II than today, though.

Central to my being Catholic is Jesus' love for the poor. He saw the world through their eyes. His world-view was from the bottom up.

This is the classic error of liberation theology: the error that the Gospel is to be interpreted primarily through the eyes of the poor. Yes, the Church is the Church of the Poor: no less than Vatican II and the Magisterium said so. However, this does not mean that the poor are the privileged interpreters of the Gospel simply because they are poor.

The Jesus of history that I know, before he became the transcendent Christ to us, was a carpenter and the builder of both a physical and a spiritual kingdom.

The artificial separation between the "Jesus of history" and the "Christ of faith" is precisely the heresy that has been repeatedly condemned by the Magisterium, and which Pope Benedict XVI is thoroughly refuting in his book "Jesus of Nazareth." This heresy implies that the "Christ" taught by the Church is basically a construct of the early Christians which is different from the actual Jesus.

True Christianity is giving power to the powerless. It is about restoring human dignity and liberating God's people from begging and stealing....

At the heart of Christianity is social justice anchored on Jesus' love for the oppressed and the spirit of democracy is equality for all but looking at the vast social inequity in wealth and opportunity in our country clearly shows that we have been unfaithful to our core values and belief systems. God is not about structures and rituals but about caring.

These -- and many other passages in this speech -- clearly show that Tony Meloto conceives of Christianity basically as public service and as sociopolitical liberation. This is a terrible, terrible error.

I admire Tony Meloto as a man, but I really wish he'd be as good a Catholic -- doctrinally speaking -- as he is as a social worker and servant of his nation.


C.D. said...

WillyJ, Thank you for that last one, it's what I was waiting for. Funny I was praying about how to react to it, and somehow something inside me said to wait. I thank God now that I did.

God bless, and thanks again,


WillyJ said...

Thanks CD. Can I repost it here? It seems more appropriate under this Faith and Reason topic.

Dear Mr. John Nery,

I appreciated your insightful piece in your July 15, 2008 Inquirer column entitled "Are you a Catholic writer?".

Thus, allow me to react with a few comments.

You said: "On certain issues, I think the Church hierarchy in the Philippines has gotten it wrong."

"There is nothing controvertible, for instance, in the crisis of legitimacy that surrounds the President, like a pall of permanent exhaust."

The CBCP's position not to call for the resignation of PGMA amidst significant clamor is not an infallible position. We can thus call the bishop's position itself controvertible, because the bishops are merely stating an opinion in the form of a pastoral guidance (wise and prudent in my personal judgement as it were) in a political matter best left for the secular system to address. It is understandable to say likewise that those who hold contrary positions (including you, I suppose) are merely stating their own opinions on the matter.

"The bishops’ position on population growth and the marital responsibility of Catholic couples continues to be based, mistakenly, on what the great theologian Bernard Haring characterized, with deliberate irony, as the absolute sacredness of the biological.".

On this matter, the bishops are not expressing an opinion, they simply faithfully echo the consistent and unchanging teaching of the Church Magisterium. The Church's position on contraceptives and the sanctity of marriage is universal, as exemplified by the encyclicals Humanae Vitae and Familiaris Consortio. They don't have a choice, otherwise it would constitute a heretical position that would sever their communion with Rome. On this matter they couldn't care less what the "great theologian" Bernard Haring (who's he?) has to say.

"But on other issues, I think the bishops called it right. On the conflict tearing the Couples for Christ movement apart, for instance, the hierarchy has sought to honor the original charism of the movement. That is only as it should be."

Again, certain bishops expressing their fallible position, and it does not necessarily constitute a universally accepted, official Church position. In fact your column admits that not all of them carry the opinion that the "original charism" should be honored. Vatican II states that the test of charism's "genuineness and proper use belongs to those who are appointed leaders in the Church, to whose special competence it belongs" (#12, Lumen Gentium). In the case of CFC as an international association of the faithful, the proper Church authority that tests its proper use of charisms is the Vatican through the Pontifical Council of the Laity (PCL). CFC has a standing recognition by the Vatican PCL. The mere fact that Vatican has retained that recognition to date despite the fact that it is well aware of the controversy, is enough proof that CFC exercises genuine and proper use of charisms. Thus it is immaterial to talk about a need for honoring an "original charism", whatever that means.

In closing, I think you are on track to think that the Church and Catholic culture are eminently political, I suppose to the direction that any political activity concerning the common good must of necessity be the Church's concern. Lastly, I dare venture my personal interpretation what a "Catholic thinker" means. It is a philosophical disposition grounded on Faith and Reason, which are not only compatible but essential together, as Pope John Paul II so lucidly expounds in in his encyclical Fides et Ratio.

Sincerely yours, more power, and God bless,


P.S. I don't consider myself an astute "Catholic thinker" either, and not any much smarter than your average person, definitely much less than your recent reader who has two degrees in Physics. I am just a stumbling yet persevering Catholic who holds fast to the deposit of faith.

C.D. said...


I actually meant what you posted about Caloy Palad, hehe, but that's good too.


WillyJ said...

Sure, CD, and here goes my take.

I think FFL has the habit of blasting away emails without verifying if it is ok to disseminate it with the originator-author’s permission. Sorry for Mr. Palad, but if this is already going the rounds in FFL, I don’t see why we shouldn’t be forewarned and forearmed. Another thing is that if they make a big issue out of this, it would also be and admission that they are taking advantage of a sensitive source, for which common courtesy tells that they should at least get permission first. Having said that...

Mr. Palad raises some good points, but I think he is reading too much into Tony Meloto's speech. That speech was not meant to be a doctrinal treatise, and Mr. Palad seems to be treating it so and lifting verses out of context. My take is that it is meant as an inspirational speech more than anything else, an exhortation to "to bring passion in the Church to serve God by serving the poor".

I guess the warning against falling into the errors of liberation theology is most welcome, and I trust that Mr. Palad's critique is well-intentioned. I contend tough, that Mr. Palad's critique comes off beyond a mere warning, in so far as his last statement already makes a conclusion on Tony Meloto's doctrinal belief based on that speech alone: "These -- and many other passages in this speech -- clearly show that Tony Meloto conceives of Christianity basically as public service and as sociopolitical liberation".

Indeed, TM's speech comes across as apparently strongly emphasizing the work for the poor. The speech has ample references to the controversy hounding GK comprising the first few paragraphs, and this gives a pretty good idea where the rest of the speech is leading to. That reveals the context, and Mr. Palad shouldn’t be too surprised if TM deals at length with love for the poor. However, before expounding forward on his theme, he asserts up front : "I have not veered away from the Catholic Church and set aside my faith for social work. I have put my social work inside my faith. There it goes Mr. Palad, I don’t see this statement nicely fitting your conclusion.

Social work is something unified and integral to his faith, and by further analogy, you cannot put something bigger inside something that is smaller. TM may have emphasized social work in his inspirational speech, but I see nothing in there that will make me safely conclude that TM contradicts the salvific aspect of BOTH Faith AND Works, and I don’t see either that his speech "clearly shows" that he espouses liberation theology. I see that Mr. Carlos Palad has a reputation of being a very good Catholic apologist, God bless him, but in this case he seems to be barking up the wrong tree.

Can't think of a good name right now said...

I agree with WillyJ's comments regarding Mr Palad's critique. It just doesn't really seem to fit the speech TM gave, but rather cherry-picks a few bits and pieces in order to confine TM to a stance of liberation theology.

But on the whole, TM's article doesn't seem to be able to be forced into that box. I thought he trod a very good line avoiding just such an effort from those who would like to criticize him...

...but that's just another mere apologist's thoughts.

jonitanitayturin said...


Yes, "it's just another apologists's thoughts..."

There's plenty of them in the public square here in Cagayan de Oro, who keep on talking and debating...and when they walk, it's perhaps towards home, and not in any place like GK where the physical act of helping does the talking...

I honor Mr. Palad, though, for having admitted that his written thoughts on TM's talk in Ateneo were not meant for public consumption, and while we cannot trust FFL to be that honorable in view of their current dearth for any material to feed their hungry sheep, I hope it is not lost on all of us that Mr. Palad has distanced himself from any circumstance that has brought his piece to FFL-- because he has anticipated that it would be used deviously against CFC.


Brod Loy Dinorog of Cagayan de Oro FFL, naluoy ko nimo nga diha ka pa manguha ug topic ninyo sa FFL for sharing kang Pader Tulabing; sus, Brod, hibawo ra ba gayud ko nga lawom-lawom kag panghunahuna. Pag-source gud ug lain dinhi sa IDOTRCFC, pagkadaghan dinhi nga imong magamit, Brod. Intawon...Mingaw ko nimo. God Bless (Brother Loloy Dinorog of Cagayan de Oro FFL, I lament that you will source your FFL topic for sharing from (the work of) Fr. Tulabing. Well, I know you are high-minded, so do get from better sources like IDOTRCFC. There's plenty of them here that you can use, Brother. What a pity...I miss you. God Bless.)

WillyJ said...

Let me add:

Based on some google searches, this Mr. Carlos Palad looks like a genuine warrior for the Faith. One cannot really go into Catholic Apologetics without a real calling and a charism that goes with it. I'm quite sure he will face this furor objectively, once his misreading is pointed out to him. Btw, I hope you noticed in the last sentence of his disclaimer: "...but it grieves me that my words are now being used in favor of a group (the CFC-FFL) that I have not ceased to warn people against."

CFCSeekingTruth said...


Here's my take on Mr. Palad's critique of TM's speech.

In my opinion, if he is a revered Catholic Apologist, he should not go blasting away his sentiments on mere LAY PEOPLE expressing their faith on how they could be a good Catholic. In fact, I believe, people with more theological knowledge, should listen more... and probably learn from people who are acting on their faith. Appreciation will always be better than crab-like reactions hiding behind words that are even hard to understand by mere lay people.

I'm sure TM is not a Theologian, like millions and billions of Catholics. And for simple Catholics, like the many around the world, I bet you a handful can only tell what "Liberation Theology is."

I don't know about Mr. Palad, but can he also say that St. Francis of Assisi, Mother Theresa of Calcutta and other saints who simply loved the poor was practicing liberation theology?

By the way, in serving the poorest of the poor families, will your opening pitch be.. thou shall not practice this THEOLOGY or THAT? Or beware of such eschatological heresy...

I'm sure St. Peter, the great follower of of Jesus is not a THEOLOGIAN, either. You think?

Precisely why simple men are lifted by God to inspire multitudes to come to Him and serve his flock.

Yes, there are great minds and great apologists. However, I dare say, there are only a few GREAT MEN with simple minds who practice their FAITH.

God bless.

Deo Volente said...

Sadly, there are people who use their minds more than their hearts.

I was like this before I joined CFC. I always had to base everything on the intellectual (not that I have that). I always had a thing or 2 to say about the Catholic Church, about other Christians, about other people. And how they should be like this and like that. And how they should do things this way and that way.

When I joined CFC and allowed the Holy Spirit to manifest its power over me, I was freed from always using my mind. I was inspired to use my heart more. I began to trust that the Lord will allow my MIND to see the TRUTH through my HEART. You see, the Holy Spirit gives you a new heart, a heart of flesh to replace your heart of stone. It allows you to see the other person from the brighter perspective instead of always being critical and suspicious of their words or actions. It allows you to see and appreciate the inherent goodness that is in every person, so that it will overcome his/her sinful nature (which is common to every one of us).

There is value in advancing our intellects for the purpose of uncovering the Truth, for imparting our gifts of wisdom and knowledge to build our Church, and most specially for glorifying God and Him alone. It should not be for the purpose of glorifying self, for getting the satisfaction of correcting others, or for judging others without just cause and undeniable facts. And having intellect is of no value if the holder does not practice it.

A true practicing theologian should pass the test of having these qualities inside him/her and those qualities exuding from him/her and manifesting in his/her words and actions: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

God bless!

Anonymous said...

In addition to Deo's comments...

TM: Central to my being Catholic is Jesus' love for the poor. He saw the world through their eyes. His world-view was from the bottom up.

Palad: This is the classic error of liberation theology: the error that the Gospel is to be interpreted primarily through the eyes of the poor. Yes, the Church is the Church of the Poor: no less than Vatican II and the Magisterium said so. However, this does not mean that the poor are the privileged interpreters of the Gospel simply because they are poor.

Let me get this straight.

1. Mr. Palad says that TM's statement that Jesus loved the poor is an interpretation of the Gospel.

2. TM said that because of this love, Jesus saw the world through the eyes of the poor and thus has a world-view that was bottom-up. Mr. Palad seems to take this to mean that TM is advocating that the Gospel should be interpreted primarily through the eyes of the poor and that the poor are privileged interpreters of the Gospel.

I have a hard time making the intellectual leap from TM's statement to Mr. Palad's conclusion. For one, TM was talking about a natural consequence of loving another - that of being able to see the world through their eyes. Is TM really talking about looking at the Gospel through the eyes of the poor?

3. Mr. Palad agrees that the Church is the Church of the Poor. Thus the Church must love the poor and, consequently, must be able to see the world through their eyes.

The only way I can reconcile Mr. Palad's conclusion that TM's statement is an error is if we take TM's statement to mean that Jesus sees the world solely from the bottom-up. That could be taken to mean that the only way to look at the Gospel is through the eyes, i.e. world-view, of the poor.

Though TM's statement has a slight implication of this, it does not categorically make the claim that bottom-up is the only view of the world that Jesus had. In a larger sense, TM's whole speech, taken in the context that it was given by a man in his position and stature in society, is an eloquent top-down view of a charism made highly effective by the lessons learned through a bottom-up view. Where does interpreting the Gospel come into that?

Here's another one I'm having difficulty with.

TM: True Christianity is giving power to the powerless. It is about restoring human dignity and liberating God's people from begging and stealing....

At the heart of Christianity is social justice anchored on Jesus' love for the oppressed and the spirit of democracy is equality for all but looking at the vast social inequity in wealth and opportunity in our country clearly shows that we have been unfaithful to our core values and belief systems. God is not about structures and rituals but about caring.

Palad: These -- and many other passages in this speech -- clearly show that Tony Meloto conceives of Christianity basically as public service and as sociopolitical liberation. This is a terrible, terrible error.

Again I am challenged to make an intellectual leap from TM's statements to Mr. Palad's conclusions. Again I can only reconcile Mr. Palad's conclusions if I take TM's statements to mean that:

(1) True Christianity is solely about giving power to the powerless and,

(2) At the heart of Christianity there is only social justice.

From that viewpoint I can follow Mr. Palad saying that Christianity is reduced to public service.

But TM's statements do not make such claims of exclusivity. Yes, at the heart of Christianity is social justice. "The promotion of justice and peace and the penetration of all spheres of human society with the light and the leaven of the Gospel have always been the object of the Church's efforts in fulfilment of the Lord's command"(Social Doctrine of the Church). But TM is not saying it is the only thing there. Especially if we consider the context of TM's speech, the intellectual leap needed to come to Mr. Palad's conclusion becomes enormous, if not impossible. The conclusion is stated as a generalized definition of TM's Christianity based solely on 4 sentences.

My impression is that Mr. Palad used a canon to shoot a fly. It's intellectual overkill caused by isolating statements, analyzing them out of context and then generalizing their meaning. I understand that Mr. Palad's calling is to defend the Catholic teachings. I respect his vocation but I would like to remind him that those, like him, whose calling necessarily place them in a highly intellectual milieu are subject to higher standards of thoroughness and intellectual due diligence. In a sense, drawing non-existent meanings from simple statements by applying the crushing weight of doctrinal arguments in inordinate amounts is not only intellectual overkill; it borders on intellectual dishonesty.

As to FFL's gleeful and unauthorized use of Mr. Palad's name, reputation and comments, that is innovatively taking intellectual dishonesty to an art form. They already proved they are intellectually dishonest when they tampered with Cardinal Rylko's letter.


WillyJ said...

Your insights, as always, are spot-on.

That is the common danger with apologetics: reading with the mind rather than with the heart.
TM speaks from the heart, and its altogether a different experience hearing him in person deliver a speech compared to reading a transcript of his speech. CFCSeekingTruth is right, TM is not a theologist, a simple Catholic who just wants to be a good one. Sadly, the context was lost on a learned person like Mr. Palad. Strange, while I was reading his critique, it sounded eerily like an evangelical, fundamentalist harangue. Certainly, the seven fruits you mentioned got lost along the way.

jonitanitayturin said...


Tumpak, kapatid na CFCseekingtruth!

Thank you, Lord, for Brother Deo. You make him flawlessly hew and mold the good words into our weary-resistant cloaks of courage and resolve to continue living and fighting for Couples for Christ!

Even if the likes of apologist Palad may write of some “raging” personal feelings (or reflect on an event – like TM’s sharing at the Ateneo), “blasting” his theological prowess to carp on a genuine act of faith and charity will be uncalled for. If he sees the “ghost” of liberation theology in TM, that is his problem; the man is only practicing what Jesus preached!

Anticipating his comments, I also say the same thing to FAP who can miss this point also. Mahilig yun to (He is used to) act as his own apologist as evidenced by his rubber-like assertion that he/FFL is at peace but thereafter spreads discordant notes to gain attention to himself. He did disparage liberationist tendencies and argued that since he perceived these in GK, then GK must be removed from CFC.

Frankie, we see Frankenstein trying to make a sneaky comeback through Mr. Palad, who has already tried to warn everyone and all about you and FFL. “EAT YOUR HEART OUT... BULAGA!!!”

Sleepless in NJ said...

My favorite passage

1 Corinthians 1:26-30

"... look and see whom God has called. Few among you can be said to be cultured or wealthy, and few belong to noble families. Yet God has chosen what the world considers foolish, to shame the wise; He has chosen what the world considers weak to shame the strong, making use of what is nothing to nullify the things that are... But by God's grace you are in Christ Jesus, who as become our wisdom from God, and to make us just and holy and free."

I see in this room (blog) many unimportant people. We didn’t come from noble or political families. We did not have a degree in Harvard or have any theological education. We are unimportant people, weak, and worst of it all we are sinners... yet God has chosen many of us to serve and love the poor (like Tito Tony). By God's grace in Christ we are made just, holy, and free. Free to serve and love others.

In the end, it is not our human abilities, talents, birthright, nobility, education, or who we know that give reason to our victory... but in Christ alone we find our reason in continuing to serve the poor and care for the least among us... in Christ alone we find our victory.

I honor Tito Tony and all our missionaries (GK workers and fulltime workers).

“You can say what you think… but you will live what you believe”
(Mark Hall, Casting Crown)

Thank you for living what it means to be a Christian… caring for the least among us.

Anonymous said...

My favorite passage from a papal encyclical:

“The eyes of faith behold a wonderful scene: that of a countless number of lay people, both women and men, busy at work in their daily life and activity, oftentimes far from view and quite unacclaimed by the world, unknown to the world's great personages but nonetheless looked upon in love by the Father, untiring labourers who work in the Lord's vineyard. Confident and steadfast through the power of God's grace, these are the humble yet great builders of the Kingdom of God in history.” (JPII’s Chistifidelis Laici, 17).

Allow me brethren to share some reflections on the Disciples Weekend for MCG last January, 2008.

“There is a confession that I have yet to make. It is time to make it now.

During the writing of the foregoing reflections [The Lay Faithful as Nation-builders], at the back of my mind was a recurring thought – How could CFC be so inspired that its journey has been so paradoxically consistent and integral with the Church’s teachings and wonderfully in perfect rhyme with history?

Did our elders start off with a deep study of theology? Did our elders read first the Catechism and the Compedium to countercheck their initiatives and moves from time to time? Do they have a firm grasp of Philippine History? Have they been monitoring the encyclicals and draw solely from them, inspiration?

I made a bet that, no, not really. My elders have been as “lay” as I am. Hence my question – How did CFC do it then?

It took me sheer attendance at the Discipleship Weekend (January 25-27, 2008) in Baguio City to begin to get a glimpse of the correct answers.

By “basking in God’s love”, to borrow Bro. Joey Arguelles’ exhortation, I came to initially understand that all the brilliance, all the inspiration and all the initiatives were simply rooted in the fact that CFC has been first embraced by God’s love. We have all received our respective “Power Hugs” everyday since our CLPs, to borrow Bro. Melo Villaroman’s insights.

In the process, we began to feel how it was to be hugged, even if we had never been hugged before. From there, we drew our strength and started to understand the “heart” of the Christian Faith (1 Jn 4:16), which we have passionately attempted to share to others --- like Bro. Ricky Cuenca and Sis. Irma, who even if “not ready to serve”, just heeded the call to bring the Good News to the ends of the earth. It was a journey from miracles to miracles, since then, with God’s embrace providing us the “comfort and strength” and “healing,” as powerfully exemplified by Sis. Nini Villaroman’s sharing.

With Christian love at the core of everything that CFC has been doing, the paradoxical has become understandable, “God’s commandments, simplified”, as explained by Bro. Roquel Ponte. Love transformed the sinful, the stubborn and the selfish and made them missionaries for “holiness and heroism”.

It is no longer then self-contradicting to have in our midst the Raul Dizons and the Nina Pontes. CFCs can serve as heroically as the brethren who have risked losing family stability and security by moving to CFC service that called for “greatness” – read as, ‘one that demanded great sacrifices,’ and at the same time, expressing the same love in simple, small, everyday and practical ways, as in IBAE (Don’t be Irritated, Don’t Blame, Don’t Accuse, and Don’t Envy). For we serve those who have faces, like the Jimmys of Baseco, and the “beggars” who long to be “touched”.

It is God’s love that propels CFC. The same love will and can “save tomorrow.” A love that, according to the experiences of Bro. Joe Tale, is “patient and listening”, “sacrificial”, and “unconditional.” One that “takes a fresh look at one another everyday,” said Karyl Arriola; one that enriches even if it humbles and humiliates, as per Bro. Tom Prado; and a love that trusts even if faced with a “blank canvas,” said Sis. Beng Prado.

Hence, “we ain’t seen nothing yet,” according to Bro. Lito Tayag. Jesus Christ prepared us in the last 25 years, to have the “warm bodies that will set the world on fire” with God’s transforming love: even if we are as alone in the desert of Sudan, like Sis. Diana Cajilo, or serving as a “submissive wife,” who has just recently realized “What is there in life to do, di ba, but to serve the Lord?” like Sis. Marivi Dalman.

As a constant companion, there is the Eucharist -- Jesus Christ is there. The assurance that “I am with you”. Indeed, “we need God, to love,” said Cardinal David Kamau. “If you are to love, you need the Eucharist, the power from Jesus Christ.” Only through Him can we “Walk and love; go out and evangelize!”

“God extended that love, even before we started to love Him,” said Bro. Joe Yamamoto. Thus we cannot pay that back, just like the love showered upon us by our parents.

What we should do is to “Lift High the Banner of Love.” That way, we do not just blend, but stand out for our Lord, shared Bro. Art Alabanza -- like the missionaries in the “dark continent of Africa” now “the cradle of mission”, as related by Bro. Clarke Nebrau; and the family missionaries in Timor Leste, like the Santiagos and the Rodriguezes.

“When things get confused, let us rally to the Flag of Christ!” exhorted Bro. Joe Yamamoto. “Lift High the Banner of Love by giving each other ‘power hugs’ everyday, by living out our covenant, by serving the least, the last and the lost, by becoming caring servant leaders, dutiful subordinate to our pastoral leaders, consistent witness to the love of Christ, extra milers in service, by being cheerful in going out of our comfort zones, … and by being victorious in Christ.”

With these, I most humbly realized: there is a reason why both the Catechism and the Compedium start with love and end with love and why Pope Benedict XVI’s first encyclical is Deus Caritas Est. The same reason why Couples for Christ did not start with concepts and theories and theology – i.e. the People of God received the Power Hug of Love first. Share that, and we will not stray.

Now I realize too why I should not end my reflection on The Lay Faithful as Nation Builders this way:

“The sound of trumpet now is a call to advance not to retreat; to gather and assemble to fight, not to scamper for safety and eventually, scatter.”

Truly, what is before us now is no longer the Sound of Trumpet, but the Banner of Love to be lifted high and planted in the hearts of peoples, across the globe."

Arnel M. Santos
CFC WestB3
January 28, 2008
11:42 AM

Deo Volente said...

I also honor Mr. Palad for explaining that his email was taken out of context and used in a way that is very different from his original intention.

I certainly do not agree with his conclusion and I was not able to sense any connection between Tony Meloto's words and Mr. Palad's interpretation. But I respect his opinion and I do not condone anyone calling him names. Just as he was free to form and convey his own opinions, we are likewise free to refute his views in a charitable way.

I still value hearing his views on things and I hope that we hear some more from this man since he seems to be knowledgeable on areas where you and I may not be.

May God continue to bless him and give him the gift of wisdom. And may the Lord use him as an instrument to shine the Light of Truth in the dark.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Deo. Mr. Palad does not deserve to be called names. He is entitled to his own opinions and should not be denigrated for it.

We can disagree with him. We can debate with him. We can even criticize his methods and reasoning. But we should respect him as a person. It is inexcusable for CFCers to stoop so low as to resort to name calling.

We should remember that the one who resorts to insults and low blows is often the one who has run out of arguments.

I just read an entry in Pulp Fiction signed Carlos deploring his dire straits. I am assuming that this is Mr. Palad. For me, his entry in this blog is the same as someone needing help knocking on my door. I dare not refuse.

Mga kapatid, if we stand for justice in this blog, we should stand in solidarity with Mr. Palad. Though we may not agree with his views regarding Tito Tony, he is nonetheless a brother in need. How can we not respond? I'm sure Tito Tony would be one of the first to come in his defense. I believe this is part of being CFC. To come to his aid is to uphold CFC values and, ultimately, is in defense of the real CFC.

Mr. Palad, you are not alone anymore. Count me in.


jonitanitayturin said...


1. After all is said and done, what is wrong with "liberation theology, really? Please disabuse this curious mind. I vaguely recall its rustic or "romantic" image being that of a revolutionary priest among the rural poor in Central America with a rifle in his hand... Say, will it change if the rifle is replaced with hammer or a mason's tool - tuck in there a plow, too (the cross and the bible of course being permanent fixtures of the priestly garments)? (Stand down and stay there, FAP! This representation is not its advocate, but in your desperation, you will have the propensity to call a duck one who you think walks and talks like one…That was unfair when you made the same sweeping statement about GK just so you could advance your hackneyed "veering away" arguments. Remember, it has been stated: "puro utak" dito.)

2. If for some reason "a help from the devil can be welcome", why not be open towards a "theology" that promises total human liberation?

3. Our distinct learning here in CFC is that we just have to walk our talk, we share our experiences and victories in the Lord, which are in fact, the best teaching tools. And most of all, we Trust in God, we fully trust Him to put the right words into our mouths when we are asked to bear witness to anything and everything there is to convince everyone that He has taken possession of our entire humanity, that we joyfully have become "fools" only for Him, that we are His faithful laborers for the harvest..

May not the advocacy we have here be another kind or dimension of “theological liberation”?

Here in CFC, it is not the human person that comes to "liberate" us; rather, freedom comes from the LOVE OF GOD drawing every person to the pool of generosity, the ultimate act that is ever fully liberating, where the human spirit wafts in joyful abandon as the steadfast follower of Christ completes the exhortation to give UNTIL it hurts...

Mr. Palad, you may want to explore the defining moments of a CFC and GK advocate and/or follower as another dimension in liberation philosophy or theology?... C'mon, it will be most exciting that you summon all your intellectual or philosophical "prowess" to cover and explain it. It is already there in practice... all you'll need is the inspiration to think through, and write about it. We know you have the genius to be a CFC apologist. Just beware who you email your drafts to; better still don't email them to anybody at all, not yet at least. Thanks. GOD BLESS.

jonitanitayturin said...

Brother TE, thanks for calling attention to a Christian in need!

I've just finished posting here - with an invitation for Bro. Palad to write his insights into another dimension of a 'lberationist theology' the way CFCs have lived their Christianity in GK - and now this information about his plight, his mental torment and persecution from the improper, dishonest, and wily use of his personal notes, as well as the exploitation of the email system do him in for his sharp reproofs against FFL in the past.

Brother Palad/Carlos, we've acknowledged your being man enough to warn us in CFC that you have condemned FFL's emailing of your personal notes WITHOUT YOUR PERMISSION. I did honor that gesture here, too, and I come to your defense.

We lift our prayers against the Enemy.


Carlos Antonio Palad said...

Dear all;

Thank you for all the encouraging words.

As for my critics: although I hope that they'll stop calling people names, I have read through all their posts and I find some useful insights.

For the record, I LOVE GAWAD KALINGA. I served in Gawad Kalinga for almost all my weekends in 2004.Although I have moved on to paths less travelled since then, I have not ceased to admire Gawad Kalinga. That is why I've been so furious about the misuse of my private email, which was simply an "off-the-cuff" email pending a further, more objective study of TM's speech.

Yes, I do find certain questionable things in TM's speech. I cannot, in conscience, retract that. However, there is also much in it that is good and even necessary to hear. In my email, I did not allude to these good things because in the context of Apologia (the confidential email list) everyone already knew of my strong support for CFC-IC and GK.

And I agree that a study of the spirit of Gawad Kalinga would be excellent, even necessary. I will certainly share some of my insights when I have the time.