Are you a Filipino? Then, take part in changing the Philippines

Monday, September 1, 2008

I've read this letter of Fr. James Reuter of Ateneo de Manila from Hector's blog and with his permission I am spreading this letter as a call for prayer and change to my fellow Filipinos.

In my recent blog entry, I have written about the Moro armed struggle and the never ceasing Muslim-Christian conflict and the battle for power, land and autonomy over some parts of Mindanao. So, what do we need to do about it? These are some of the responses from my friends:

Rosilie said:
Kalungkot, but we need miracles"

Virginia said:

In my own perception, the best thing we can do about it is prayer. Only God can change the face of the earth. People can't change the world, because the world has a lot of complications!

Iceah said:
A call to prayer and peaceful talk plus a sincere heart to make a change is what we all need, LAHAT tayo government, people involve and us Filipinos. Unity kung baga, pero kung puro tayo sisi, point fingers, ako tama, walang mangyayari talaga.

Pastilan said:
I guess this problem would end if all the Muslims in Mindanao stop believing that they are not Filipinos and all Christians stop seeing Muslims as Muslims.

I have already given my two cents worth of opinion in that post but let their suggestions be heard and let's help make the Philippines a livable and country worth living again.

Now here's an article by Fr. Reuter (he's not even Filipino)... please read the letter with your mind and heart open. Thanks again to Hector for this copy.

by Father James Reuter, S.J.

By her own admission, GMA (Gloria Macapagal Arroyo) rightfully assessed that 'over the last decades, our republic has become one of the weakest, steadily left behind by its more progressive neighbors.'

Forty years ago, we were only second to Japan in economic stature, and way ahead of Singapore , Hong Kong , Malaysia , and Thailand . Today, at our present growth rate, it will take us 30 years to get to where Thailand is.

1. A population of 160 Million;
2. Of those, 70 to 90 million (equivalent to our current population) will live below the poverty line;
3. Our national debt is estimated to be at US$200B (compared to US$28B when Marcos fled, and US$53B today);
4. We will be competing, not against Thailand or even Vietnam , but against Bangladesh ;
5. We will be the most corrupt nation in Asia , if not in the world (we're already ranked 11th most corrupt nation by Transparency International) .

The signs are clear.

Our nation is headed towards an irreversible path of economic decline and moral decadence.
It is not for lack of effort. We've seen many men and women of integrity in and out of government, NGOs, church groups & people's organization devote themselves to the task of nation-building, often times against insurmountable odds. But not even two people's revolutions, bloodless as they may be, have made a dent in reversing this trend. At best, we have moved one step forward, but three steps backward.

We need a force far greater than our collective efforts, as a people, can ever hope to muster.

It is time to move the battle to the spiritual realm.
It's time to claim GOD's promise of healing of the land for His people.
It's time to gather GOD's people on its knees to pray for the economic recovery and moral reformation of our nation.

Is prayer really the answer?

Before you dismiss this as just another rambling of a religious fanatic, I'd like you to consider some lessons we can glean from history.

England 's ascendancy to world power was preceded by the Reformation, a spiritual revival fueled by intense prayers.

The early American settlers built the foundation that would make it the most powerful nation today - a strong faith in GOD and a disciplined prayer life. Throughout its history, and especially at its major turning points, waves of revival and prayer movement swept across the land.

In recent times, we see Korea as a nation experiencing revival and in the process producing the largest Christian church in the world today, led by Rev. Paul Yongi Cho. No wonder it has emerged as a strong nation when other economies around it are faltering.

Even from a purely secular viewpoint, it makes a lot of sense. For here there is genuine humbling & seeking of GOD through prayer, moral reformation necessarily follows. And this, in turn, will lead to general prosperity. YES, we believe prayer can make a difference. It's our only hope.

Today, we launch this email brigade, to inform Filipinos from all over the world to pray, as a people, for the economic recovery and moral reformation of our nation. We do not ask for much. We only ask for 5 minutes of your time in a day, to forward this email to your close friends and relatives.

This is the kind of unity which can make a big difference. Of course, if you feel strongly, as I do, about the power of prayer, you can be more involved by starting your own prayer group or prayer center.

We have tried people power twice; in both cases, it fell short. Maybe it's time to try prayer power. GOD never fails.

Is there hope? YES!

We can rely on GOD's promise, but we have to do our part. If we humble ourselves and pray as a people, GOD will heal our land. By GOD's grace, we may yet see a better future for our children.

'If My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sins, and will heal their land.'(2 Chronicles 7:14).


15 comment(s):

hector_olympus said...

2 things we learn from Fr. Reuter's article.

1. we work
2. and we ask God to work.

Needless to say, we know that even of we don't ask God, He works. However, He is always pleased when we, His children, would work our faith and ask Him to do His wonderful plans for the country.

iceah said...

AMEN to "Prayers" if our works are not enough God's works can change things only He has the power to change a person,a country, anything He created c: before we even ask for it. But sometimes He asks for our unity to see if we badly and really need it c:

pchi said...


that's right ^__^

and God uses us to work
God causes us to work
he touches our hearts
it's just that sometimes we don't listen to his voice

pchi said...


that's so right sis


He has his ways and His thoughts are different from the way we think

maybe he has been telling us to work but we haven't

CKULIT said...

Prayer always works when it is coupled with your actions. If you pray and pray but does nothing, you can't expect anything to happen either. So what we need is to do our part as a good citizen and keep on believing and working!

Tigis said...

hello, I'm not filipino but Indonesian. I have some filipino's friend at my workplace here in Batam (1hr from singapore). I don't really know what do the muslims in Mindanao want. Is it freedom? Or just live together peacefully with other citizens. I'm a muslim and I think I can say that as a muslim basically all i want from my country is the freedom to do what my religion told me to do. Freedom to pray 5 times a day, to fasting, to see clean environment in society, etc. Most muslims really hate free sex, even if they are corruptor. Strange huh :) In general I believe Indonesia are worse than phillipines. Indonesia have also a huge corruptions, high percentage of poverty, moral decadency, etc.
Just blogwalking today. I just started my english post yesterday so maybe it's difficult to understand :) Have a nice day :)

pchi said...



if we pray but we don't do anything... it's like we don't have faith at all

pero ate, what are some things we can do to help?

other than writing our opinions...

i've been thinking

pchi said...


i am sorry to hear that you also suffer corruption and other problems with the social system and government

the Muslims in Mindanao want to have autonomy over the land, their own government and rules

to some extent this has been given to them... the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao was created, where they have like a mini-government although they are still part of the Philippines, during elections, f#or for fundings, etc

they also want to own the land, as original settlers of some areas,

the problem is, there are also other tribes and ethnic groups who were also original settlers on that place

and so they have expressed outbursts in an armed struggle.. which leaves civilians and third parties affected, homeless, or killed...

I don't judge them, because I don't really know the roots or real issues

but in my opinion, a good Muslim wants to have peace and follow the teachings of Koran and not to seek power through war or terrorism

Tigis said...

Yes you're correct Pchi. Quran never teach people to kill anybody. Even prophet Muhammad condemned any muslims who disturb non-muslims who are willing to live together peacefully. He said disturbing them means disturbing me. The sad thing is now many muslims use religion to justify their killing. Anyway, hope things could get resolved there at Mindanao.

pchi said...


thank you for enlightening me...

i thought Qu'ran would never teach something that would create dissention among people

I don't know their reasons, but we have to respect them as well

thanks for sharing

faye said...

this is really true,
corruption and lack of Decipline from our kababayans are also additional to the phils probs.
as i observed sa airport pa lang aagawin sayo bagahe mo and pasusunudin ka nila sa taxi then pag dating sa taxi iba ang sasakay and bigla ka na lng hihingan ng TIPS..hayyyyyy and sa pila pa lang agawan na gusto lahat mauna.

Me, the islands and the world said...

I read a similar article somewhere sometime ago but this one is about how America rose above the rumbles of corruption, economic depression and moral decadence decades and decades ago, sounds familiar? yes, america did it and look at them now. Anong ginawa nila, they shifted their focus in prayer and in God and they work. Fr. Reuter is right, man should work and work and God will provide.

pchi said...

@ate faye

it's true ate
but you know, I try to close my eyes and don't complain

'cause if we keep mum about everything we'd go nuts

kahit na sa garbage problem lang at following traffic regulations lang.. hindi sinusunod, ay ewan lang

pchi said...

@me and the islands of the world

thanks for sharing about about that

and you said it well I think I don't have to add anything ^__^

e-souled said...

hi pchi!

I agree with you guys!how i wish i can pour out all my sentiments about our country here. but wait, this is just suppose to be a comment and beside this is pchi's blog not mine!lol.

WHY ARE FILIPINOS SO POOR? In the ’50s and ’60s, the Philippines was the most envied country in Southeast Asia. What happened?

The basic question really is why we did not modernize fast enough and thereby doomed our people to poverty. This is the harsh truth about us today.

hey, this is just suppose to be a comment right, not a full post! hey esouled this is not your blog!lol.

just read my full comment here: WHY ARE FILIPINOS SO POOR?

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