Cardinal Tagle meets, prays with top presidentiables

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Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle (2nd from right) with (L-R) Vice President Jejomar Binay, Senator Grace Poe, Interior and Local Government Sec. Mar Roxas and PPCRV chair Henrietta de Villa. (RCAM photo)

MANILA, Sept. 8, 2015– Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle has met privately with the country’s leading presidentiables on Monday evening.

The unprecedented meeting, organized by Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), took place at the cardinal’s residence in Intramuros, Manila.

But PPCRV chair Henrietta de Villa insisted it was purely an “ordinary evening prayer” gathering and there were no talks about politics.

“There was no sharing of platforms. It was just plain moment of providing them some kind of spiritual rest,” De Villa said.

“We prayed together. The one who led us in prayer was the deacon, not the cardinal. Cardinal was one reading with us,” she disclosed.

In attendance were Vice President Jejomar Binay, Interior Secretary Mar Roxas and Senator Grace Poe.

Servant leadership

In his reflection, Tagle talked about John 13, a Bible verse that demonstrated Jesus’ leadership styles and practices.

“To be a servant, you must serve first,” De Villa quoted Tagle as saying.

It was actually the same reflection made by Tagle at a servant leadership in public service forum in Ortigas City last July.

In that occasion, the cardinal said leaders are expected to serve others first instead of being served by the people.

Atmosphere of friendship

While waiting for Tagle who came from a Mass in Makati City, the three officials had the chance to talk to each other about many things except politics.

“They talked about traffic that it’s getting better–things like that. There was nothing earth-shaking or anything about politics,” according to De Villa.

“It was very friendly,” she added. ”It was very touching for me that it was an atmosphere of friendship.”

De Villa also said that Tagle reminded the three will not lose their friendship especially when the electoral race heats up.

“The cardinal asked them to raise the bar and integrity of the political campaign,” she said.

Of the three, only Poe has yet to declare her plans for 2016.(R. Lagarde/CBCPNews)

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