CBCP deeply wounded on PCSO controversy

11:24:00 PM

CBCP deeply wounded on PCSO controversy
By Jun Pasaylo The Philippine Star Updated July 11, 2011 12:27 PM 34 comments to this post

MANILA, Philippines – The Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) broke its silence today on its involvement on the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office fund mess, saying it was deeply wounded on the controversies.

In a pastoral statement, CBCP president Nereo Odchimar asked the public to withhold judgment on the issue as the prelate group has already elevated the case to its permanent council for immediate investigation.

“As we express our sadness, we also ask you to be slow in judgment and to conscientiously seek the whole truth behind the controversy,” Odchimar said.

He also assured that the bishops concerned are ready to accept responsibility for their action and to face the consequences if it would be proven unlawful, anomalous, and unconstitutional.

He however pointed out that the actions of the prelates were done without malice.

“Out of their sincere desire to help their people, they failed to consider the pitfalls to which these grants could possibly lead them. They have also expressed their readiness to do everything that is necessary to heal this wound so that we can all move forward in hope,” he added.

He also vowed that the CBCP will cooperate with government agencies on their investigation on the issue, “making sure that pastoral sensibilities are respected and the highest ethical standards are observed.”

“We are saddened that many of you, especially the youth, the poor, our Basic Ecclesial Communities, have been confused because of the apparent inconsistency of our actions with our pastoral preaching,” Odchimar pointed out.

The issue against the Catholic bishops came after the PCSO revealed that it gave several sports utility vehicles to the prelates during the administration of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Among recipient of SUVs were Butuan City Bishop Juan de Dios Pueblos (2), Rev. Orlando Quevedo of Cotabato (1), Monsignor Augusto Laban of Sorsogon (1) and Fr. Roger Lood (1) of the parish of Iligan City. -- With Dennis Carcamo

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