Church on Duterte’s First SONA: Huwag Kang Papatay

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The Sixth Commandment is the message for President Duterte that will emanate from a Mass which the Archdiocese of Manila will hold Monday afternoon as he delivers his first State of the Nation Address (Sona) to Congress.

The Mass will mark the launching of the “Huwag Kang Papatay” (Thou Shall Not Kill) campaign, which aims to bring together the families of the victims of extrajudicial killings that have come with the Duterte administration’s war on illegal drugs.

Those people—drug users, pushers and dealers—can no longer change their ways because they are already dead, according to an official of the Archdiocese of Manila.

“We believe, especially in the Year of Mercy, that we have a chance of showing our love of God. But because of this (the extrajudicial killings), there’s no more love because there’s no more life who will ask for forgiveness and mercy,” Fr. Atilano Fajardo said over Radio Veritas on Saturday.

Fajardo is the director of the Manila archdiocese’s Public Affairs Ministry, which will hold the Mass at St. Vincent de Paul Church on San Marcelino Street in Ermita district.

The Mass, which will start at 5 p.m., includes prayers for the victims of the extrajudicial killings and police operations and their families.

Churchgoers have been asked to wear black and bring candles for a program that will start at 4:30 p.m., by which time President Duterte will have begun to address Congress.

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Fajardo said the killings were equivalent to robbing the suspects of their right to due process and a chance to change their lives.
“We will pray for the souls of our slain brothers. We invite the families of those slain to attend,” Fajardo said.
He said he would make a personal appeal to Mr. Duterte concerning the extrajudicial killings.

Masses will be held at St. Vincent de Paul Church every last Monday of the month as part of the campaign against extrajudicial killings, Fajardo said.

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Campaigners will wear black shirts marked “Huwag kang Papatay” and posters will be put up in schools, churches and public vehicles to drum up support for the campaign
“There will be talks and forums on the Sixth Commandment and how [extrajudicial killings are] becoming the new normal. We are consolidating all [opponents] of extrajudicial killings,” Fajardo said.

“We denounce the extrajudicial killings happening in the country, done by men in uniform, by vigilantes and other groups … under the baton of the maestro. We uphold due process of law and the dignity of human life,” he said.

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Source: Philippine Daily Inquirer 

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