CBCP chief: Voting can spell heaven or hell for PH

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MANILA, April 22, 2015—The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has expressed support for the “One Good Vote,” a campaign spearheaded by the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) which seeks to prepare the Filipino voting public for the forthcoming automated 2016 presidential elections, stressing this move is a matter of “heaven and hell” for the country’s future.

CBCP president Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan

One Good Vote

“How do we make a good vote? We can only do so if we allow God to guide how we vote. Whatever the Grace of God touches becomes good. Let’s allow God to influence our voting decisions. Our vote can bring either heaven or hell to this country,” said CBCP president Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan in a Radio Veritas report.

“How do we fight evil in our society where vote-buying is common? Don’t sell your votes. Discern before voting. Don’t vote without praying first,” he added.

Villegas explained a good vote is important in choosing the person who will lead the country in the future, saying he or she must be both competent and God-fearing.

According to the prelate, the difficult task of running the state calls for someone with a high sense of dignity, as well as compassion for others.

Voters’ education

Meanwhile, PPCRV’s One Good Vote has recently made the rounds of various dioceses and parishes nationwide in an effort to educate Filipino citizens on the dangers the buying and selling of votes can bring them.

In an earlier CBCP News post, PPCRV chair Henrietta de Villa shared the lay-initiated drive aims to pave the way for “clean, honest, and peaceful” 2016 presidential elections by focusing on voters’ education.

The former ambassador to the Holy See hoped the campaign will lead to the eradication of vote-buying in the country, something which she lamented has perennially polluted the national political arena.

No vote-buying policy

She said PPCRV intends to choose a parish in each diocese where the group will conduct information dissemination, zeroing in on the important topics voters need to know, especially the “no vote-buying” policy.

Along with then Manila Archbishop Jaime L. Cardinal Sin, Antipolo Bishop Gabriel Reyes, and Msgr. Bayani Valenzuela, De Villa founded PPCRV in 1991 as a national parish-based political, but non-partisan, lay movement that “works assiduously for clean, honest, accurate, meaningful, and peaceful elections.” (Raymond A. Sebastián/CBCP News with reports from Riza Mendoza)

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