MANILA, Oct. 25, 2011?The recent encounter of government soldiers and members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in Basilan that claimed the lives of 19 soldiers prompted the National Youth Commission to call for a culture of peace and tolerance among Filipinos, especially the youth, as part of its new peace and development banner?the Mindanao 2020 youth agenda.
They also pledged support to government efforts in establishing an all-out peace in Mindanao and at the same time in championing the voice of young Mindanaoans.
Episcopal Commission on Youth executive secretary Fr. Conegundo Garganta said the ECY strongly supports the National Youth Commission’s call for peace.
“The main focus from the church youth is prayer and praying for peace is a pioneer in having tranquility [become a reality] in Mindanao,” said Garganta.
He explained that the church is making headway in its work to obtain peace, especially in making Christ visible and making Jesus the mirror of work and discipleship in order to achieve the peace that is needed.
Garganta stressed that war happens because there is a culture of mistrust and a culture of arrogant use of power.
He reiterated that the church and the youth are 100 percent in its desire and effort to make peace become a reality.
“We shouldn’t be [discouraged] by the incident that happened in Basilan, [instead let us] do more work in terms of achieving peace,” Garganta added.
On the side note, Garganta emphasized that truth should also be heard, especially for those whose lives were committed to the incident in Basilan.
“There should not be compromise in terms of our urge for peace. [Perpetrators should be held] accountable for what happened and the law must be applied to search for justice”, he explained. (Jandel Posion)