SOURCE: CBCP News by By Roy Lagarde, February 24, 2021, Manila, Philippines
On the eve of the 35th commemoration of the 1986 Edsa People Power revolt, the Vatican’s envoy to the Philippines reminded Filipinos that the only path to peace is justice.
Celebrating Mass at the iconic EDSA Shrine on Wednesday, Archbishop Charles John Brown said that there can be no peace without social justice.
“Justice is the foundation of peace in the society. When there is no justice, when people can’t receive justice, they react in violent ways,” Brown said in his homily.
“So whenever we can to promote justice in society, we are promoting peace,” he said.
The papal nuncio also stressed that there can be no true social justice amid deep inequality.
“Fairness and justice means that equality in dignity is respected,” he said. “In order to have peace in society there needs to be justice, people need to be treated fairly.”
Before the Mass, Brown led the releasing of 35 pigeons outside the church to symbolize the 35 years since the historic revolution that booted dictator Ferdinand Marcos out of power.
The archbishop also reflected on the role of Mary in the peaceful change in government.
“We thank Mary for her intercession at that moment as a mother of peace in order to allow a peaceful transition of power here in the Philippines,” Brown said.
Bishop Broderick Pabillo of the Manila archdiocese, for his part, called on Filipinos to “not let go of the promises of freedom of EDSA”.
“Let us oppose all attempts to control us and to scare us off in expressing ourselves,” Pabillo said.
Bishop Ruperto Santos of Balanga also said that the peaceful uprising was a “blessing” and showcased “what was best in us and beneficial to our country”.
However, he said that some leaders from that time failed to “live up to our trust and to the legacy of EDSA”.
“Let us commemorate Edsa to give what is best, right and moral to our country and to God; not to oneself or to a particular party or color,” Santos said.