Jul 072014

The Catholic Church in Cebu over the weekend called for more action for the poor as a tribute to a priest who disappeared nearly 30 years ago.

Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma said Fr. Rudy Romano was serving the poor when he was abducted by suspected military men on July 11, 1985.

“Fr. Rudy Romano took to heart the challenge posed by many of the Church’s social encyclicals, namely, to take the side of the poor while denouncing injustice and social inequality. Following in the footsteps of our Lord, Fr. Rudy also bore his own cross until the end when he offered his life to follow Jesus,” Palma said in a statement posted Monday on the news site of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

Palma, a former president of the CBCP, said Romano’s “life witness, his living out his vocation as a pastor and his legacy of deep commitment to Gospel values are gifts he offers to us until today even if he is no longer with us.”

“As a Church of the Poor, on this 29th anniversary of the disappearance of Fr. Rudy and his Golden Jubilee of Priestly Ordination, let us honor the Holy Father’s exhortation that we ‘share our lives with others and generously give of ourselves. (EG, 274),'” he added.

Palma lamented that almost three decades after Romano’s disappearance, poverty and corruption along with social and ecological problems remain.

He said corruption had contributed to the persistence of poverty affecting many people, while a relatively high Gross National Product (GNP) growth had not been inclusive.

Palma added that in Cebu there are “glaring indicators of poverty” such as people begging in the streets, and vendors everywhere due to high unemployment.

“Countless informal settlers are being ejected from their abode even as relocation sites are not yet well prepared. Workers continue to demand higher wages but their cries are not heard. Meanwhile, our farmers and fisherfolk continue to live in abject poverty, made worse by landlessness and the consequences of environmental abuse,” he added. Joel Locsin/NB, GMA News

 Leave a Reply