I saw on television the Pope withdrawing his hand repeatedly from a long line of people who bowed to kiss the ring when he was in an Italian town of Loreto on the Adriatic Sea. Yes, the name Loreto was known to Italians.
Alessandro Gisotto, director of Holy Sea press office, explained it was Pope Francis’ way of preventing the spread of germs. “It was a simple question of hygiene,” he said.
The spokesperson said normally Pope Francis allows the kissing of papal ring when with individuals or smaller groups. In that visit to that Italian town of Loreto, the Pope encountered many people arriving one after another and that is the reason why he let people not touch the ring. Gisotto added: “The Pope likes to embrace people and be embraced by people.”
Now I know because at first I thought the Pope was only afraid to lose the ring to someone. Hehe!
I am not surprised if unlawful campaign materials are still proliferating all over the city despite the repeated warning of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) to candidates of local and national positions that it will initiate cases of violating campaign rules against violators. Many candidates seem bold enough to face the Comelec threat.
While I, too, no longer believe the Comelec will make good its warning, what if it will succeed in prosecuting violators and put them all behind bars, who will occupy the seats when many of the winners are barred from posts they are running for?
But I am still hoping that voters were listening when Comelec spokesperson James Jimenez said this the other day, maybe out of exasperation to these hardheaded candidates: “Since the supporters knew beforehand their candidates were law violators, they know what to do,” without elaborating.
Don’t vote for these candidates! That’s how I interpreted Jimenez’s words! Simple.
Hopefully, members of the Philippine National Police would be non-partisan in this May 13 elections and would always remember that their duties are to maintain peace and security and protect the sanctity of the ballots and not to side with candidates.
Similar order should also be addressed to the military and other paramilitary forces so as to achieve orderly and peaceful elections.
Police Gen. Oscar Albayalde reminded his members that they must not engage in partisan activities, otherwise sanctions await those who disregard his order.
And the most important is for the citizenry to do their part. Always be vigilant and report to the proper authorities those who will attempt to disrupt the conduct of the elections.
With the cooperation of everyone, there is no doubt the coming elections will be free from cheats and violence. Hopefully!
It was 51 years ago today, an Easter Sunday, when my wife Virgie and I exchanged marriage vows at the Assumption Church along F. Torres Street. But I didn’t expect that the celebration for our 46th wedding anniversary on April 15, 2014 for continuously living together then will be our last as she first made good on her vow as she left me behind and joined Him.
While some couples still celebrate this important event in their lives for sentimental reason despite the absence of one, for me, what is there to celebrate when I have been alone for the last five years without her? Are you celebrating a happy occasion or celebrating death?
Instead, I will again visit Virgie’s plot, as what I have been doing since her death, to light candles and offer prayer that she is forever be at peace where she is now. While I’ll repeatedly ask Him to be with us always on our side, to guide us in everything we do and lessen our grief for the loss of a loved one.
Before I forget, this day is also the 22nd birth anniversary of my eldest Phil-Am granddaughter Johannah Joy who is on vacation here and staying with her dad Jojo.
She will finally end her more than a year vacation here and join me in my trip to the US within the week. God bless us all!
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