"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Saturday, February 6, 2016

A Muslim’s Remarkable Conversion to Catholicism

Remember MARIO JOSEPH's TESTIMONY? A Muslim Imam who was converted to the Catholic fiath and was persecuted, warranted to die by the order of his own family? This story of Muhammad Moussaoui is not different from the many converts whose story were not written for the fear of persecution from their very own families.  Let's continue pray for the conversion of Muslims and Protestants to Jesus and his Church. Our spiritual support, as well as sharing posts like this strengthens these new members of Christ's Body-- the Church.  

Source: Tradition, Family, and Property

The fascinating autobiography of Muhammad Moussaoui, who narrates his conversion from Islam to Catholicism, shows miracles of grace and of human correspondence, on the one hand, and on the other hand the terrible harshness of Islamic mentality and persecution of Christians. The book’s title, The Price to Pay, summarizes well what this privileged soul had to go through in order to be faithful to the call of grace. After his conversion, he took the name Joseph Fadelle.[1]

A Muslim from an Important Family
Fadelle belonged to one of Iraq’s most important Shiite Muslim families, the Moussaoui clan. As head of the clan, his father was a kind of judge and solved disputes between clan members. He also had great wealth and prestige.

Sign this Prayerful Petition to Pope Francis to save the family

In 1987 Fadelle was drafted into the Iraqi army, then under the rule of Saddam Hussein, right in the middle of the war with neighboring Iran. By this time he was 23 years old and single.

Sent to a garrison on the border with Iran, he was housed in a room with a Christian. He became indignant on learning he was going to be lodging with a Christian, an insult to a born Muslim whose family also descended from the Islam’s founder Muhammad.

The Challenge: Do You Understand the Koran?
However, the Christian, called Massoud, was older than him and welcomed him with kindness, so that little by little his prejudices began to fade. Fadelle conceived a plan to convert him to Islam. One day, when Massoud was absent, seeing among his books one titled The Miracles of Jesus, he became curious and began reading it. He had no idea who it was, because in the Koran Jesus is called Isa; but he was delighted to read about miracles such as the one during the Wedding at Cana, and was attracted by the figure of Jesus.

Still intending to convert Massoud to Islam, he asked him if Christians also had a sacred book like the Koran. After being told that Christians had the Bible, he asked to see it, thinking it would be easy to refute.

To his surprise, Massoud refused to show him the Christian book and asked an even more surprising question: if he had read the Koran. This question was offensive to one who had been brought up in Islam, but he simply replied he had. Then came a new and rather embarrassing question: “Did you understand the meaning of each word, each verse?”

The future Christian recounts that this question pierced his mind like a fiery dart, since according to Islam what matters is not to understand the Koran, but just to read it. Seeing his embarrassment, his room mate proposed that he read the Koran again, but this time trying to understand each sentence; and then Massoud would lend him the book of Christians.

Disenchantment with the Koran And a Mystical Dream
Muhammad accepted the proposal that completely changed his life. Indeed, as he tried to understand the meaning of what was written in the Koran, he realized that much of it was absurd and meaningless. A consultation with an iman failed to solve his doubts and he became increasingly disenchanted with the book of Islam.

It was as if scales fell from his eyes and he began to see for the first time what the Koran really said. Having finished this keen, meditative reading, he came to the conclusion that this book could not be of divine origin.

It was then a mystical episode took place, which prepared his conversion. He dreamed he was in a meadow on the edge of a creek and saw on the other side a very imposing, extremely attractive man. He tried to jump to the other side, but remained still in the air until the mysterious person took him by the hand and said to him: “In order to cross the creek, you need to eat the bread of life.” Then he woke up.

Conversion Shock: Jesus is the Bread of Life
No longer thinking about the dream, he got Massoud to loan him the Holy Gospels. He happened to open the book on the Gospel of Saint John. He was totally absorbed reading it and felt a great well-being. At one point, he was deeply moved to find the mysterious words of his dream: “the bread of life.” The words of Jesus in the Gospel were clear: “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall not hunger” (John 6:35).

Fadelle recounts: “Then something extraordinary happened in me, like a violent explosion that blows everything in its path, accompanied by a feeling of well being and warmth ... As if a bright light suddenly illuminated my life in a whole new way and gave it all its meaning. I had the impression of being drunk, even as I felt in my heart an indescribable feeling of strength, an almost violent, passionate love for this Jesus Christ of whom the Gospels speak!”

The Price of Conversion: Death
His conversion was complete, total and lasting. He wanted Massoud to help him become a Christian, but met with resistance. According to Islamic law, a Muslim who leaves Islam and becomes Christian should be killed along with those who led to his conversion.

At any rate, Massoud taught him to pray and the two spent their free time reading the Gospels and praying.

Massoud was released from the army while Muhammad was on leave and he did not find him on his return. Shortly after he too was discharged and returned to his parents’ house.

Years of Trial
For Fadelle, that was the beginning of a great ordeal that would last for years, requiring unparalleled loyalty.

As Massoud had recommended, he sought to conceal his conversion from his family, while avoiding, under various pretexts, to participate in their common Muslim prayers. At the same time he tried to approach the Christians, but they were afraid to accept him in their churches since they did not know him and were fearful due of the climate of persecution in which they lived.

Fadelle’s consolation was to read, covertly, the Bible he had received from Massoud, meditating especially on the Gospels. Finally he succeeded, through a Christian with whom he had made friends, to attend a church; but the eagerly awaited baptism had still not happened.

Time went by and in 1992 his father told him he had arranged a bride for him and that he should get married. It was a girl from the same social environment, and naturally a Muslim, called Anwar.

After his marriage and the birth of a son, Fadelle, who continued to attend church secretly, met a foreign missionary in Iraq who agreed to prepare him for baptism. But then something unexpected happened. One day, when he returned from Mass, his wife, who did not understand where he went every Sunday, asked if he had been going to see another woman. Caught by surprise and without thinking about what to say, Fadelle replied that he was a Christian and went to Mass every Sunday.

Wife Converts
His wife was totally shocked by the news that she was married to a Christian. Discombobulated, she locked herself in her room. Later, in the absence of her husband, she took their son and went to her mother’s house.

Fadelle then realized he was in danger. She would tell her family that he was a Christian and he would be sentenced to death. However, miraculously, his wife said nothing to her folks and agreed to go back to her own home. Even more, she asked Fadelle to explain what Christianity was. He employed the same method that Massoud had used with him. He asked her to reread the Koran trying to pay attention to the meaning of its words and the doctrine it expressed. As had happened with him, she was shocked, especially with the way the Koran deals with Muslim women.

After reading the Gospels, Anwar secretly began attending Church with her husband and taking religion classes with the missionary.

Threats of Death and Imprisonment
In 1997 an episode of capital importance took place in Fedelle’s life. His family finally realized he had taken a distance from Islam and became suspicious that something was afoot. When the couple went to church, his brothers searched his home and found the copy of the Bible. And when they questioned his young son, he crossed himself as he had learned from his parents.

The next day, at dawn, Muhammad was taken to his parent’s house on an urgent pretext. As he entered the main room, he was immediately beaten by his brothers and uncles in the presence of his father. The latter, furious with indignation, accused him of being a Christian. His own mother shouted, “Kill him and cast his body in the sewer!”

Although he was not killed on that occasion, Fadelle was taken by a cousin to one of Saddam Hussein’s political prisons to be tortured in order to reveal the name of the Christians who had “corrupted” him. For three months he was severely tortured, lost almost half his weight, and then was released. The family pretended it had all been a mistake, but put one of his sisters in his house to watch him.

Flight from Iraq, Baptism
Finally, in April 2000, after many vicissitudes, the couple and their two children managed to escape to Jordan, where he realized his longed-for dream of being baptized, along with his wife. He took the name John (but became known as Joseph) and she, Maryam.

Assassination Attempt
However, they were still unable to practice Catholicism in peace. When his family realized he had fled, they started looking for him and eventually found him in Jordan. In December of that year, four siblings and an uncle managed to lure him to a deserted place where, after a brief argument, they demanded that he apostatize from Christianity and attempted to execute the fatwa that condemns a person to death for leaving Islam.

Miraculously, despite being shot at point-blank range, the bullets narrowly missed him and he heard an inner voice telling him to run. Already some distance away, a bullet hit his ankle and he fell in the mud, fainting. His attackers thought he was dead and fled. Fadelle was taken by a stranger to a hospital and later treated by Christian doctors in his home, but Church authorities ordered him to leave Jordan in order not to endanger the Christian community. He took refuge in France, where he lives to this day.

The Beauty of a Righteous Soul
The way Fadelle was attracted by Catholicism shows how his soul had a profound righteousness and how his adherence to Islam was merely the result of circumstances of birth and family. He was actually prepared, once in contact with the truth, to accept it even at the cost of losing all the comforts and privileges of a high social position and suffering terrible persecution.

His and his wife’s conversions show how Muslims can convert and how many of them actually yearn, though unknowingly, for this “bread of life,” which is Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let us pray for these souls and for Christians so harshly persecuted in Islamic countries.

1. Joseph Fadelle, Le Prix à Payer, L’oeuvre Editions, Paris, 2010. Unfortunately the book has not been translated into English.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Iglesia Ni Cristo® calls on coming together while its own house is still divided! What a hypocrisy!

What a hypocrisy!  While Eduardo V. Manalo (EVM), its present Executive Minister had mercilessly disowned his OWN MOTHER AND SIBLINGS and sent them to "dagag-dagatang apoy" of Hell by excommunicating them, how dare they have the nerve to call for Christian "UNITY" when its own house is DIVIDED?  First, let EVM reconcile with HIS MOTHER AND SIBLINGS-- being a CHRISTIAN LEADER (if they are still worthy to be called as such) should learn to HUMBLE himself before GOD and ASK FORGIVENESS from his mother and siblings.  Ka EVM should BE A MAN, face the MEDIA and SPEAK. Ano bang kinatatakutan niya at laging spokesperson ang pinahaharap niya sa media eh PURO KASINUNGALINGAN naman ang sinasabi ng kanilang tagapag-salita.

Sorry but many Christian communities are UNITED with the CATHOLIC CHURCH for that purpose. Why not the Iglesia Ni Cristo® or INC™ JOIN the CATHOLIC CHURCH in their effort to combat this No. 1 enemy which is poverty just as other churches did?!

Iglesia calls on other religions to come together vs poverty

IN THE wake of pronouncements from various denominations slamming the growing gap between the rich and the poor, the Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) Monday called for a “multisectoral, cross-religious effort to combat poverty,” which the church referred to as “public enemy No. 1.” 
“While we have different beliefs, we agree wholeheartedly that we should wage all-out war against growing social inequity. Poverty is a problem that confronts us all, one that all faiths universally condemn,” INC general auditor Glicerio Santos Jr. said in a statement. 
Santos’ call was similar to the one made by Roman Catholic prelates who attended the recently concluded 51st International Eucharistic Congress in Cebu City: That something must be done about hunger and poverty, especially when brought about by corruption and social injustice...

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/760676/iglesia-calls-on-other-religions-to-come-together-vs-poverty#ixzz3z4Df0gWk

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Solita Monsod: On Menorca's overkill arrest!

Photo Source: Politicos.com
By: Solita Collas-Monsod / Philippine Daily Inquirer [all emphasis were mine]

I CANNOT resist putting in my two cents’ worth of comment, or rather questions, on the news reports on what has been going in Metro Manila this week. So here goes.

The Menorca arrest. 1. Two arrest warrants were served on expelled Iglesia ni Cristo worker Lowell Menorca II, both for libel. They were signed by two regional trial court judges all the way from Mindanao—the first by Alberto Quinto of the RTC in Kapatagan (second-class municipality, 2010 population: 53,916), Lanao del Norte, and the second by Wenida Papandayan of Marawi City (“The only Islamic city in the Philippines”), Lanao del Sur. Why anyone in those areas should be exercised about alleged libelous statements made by Menorca, I fail to understand, except if it is to remove the INC center from all blame. Obviously, someone was. And the judges ordering the arrest of Menorca—didn’t they have anything better to do? Maybe the Supreme Court administrator should take notice.

2. Then there’s the Manila Police Department sending out a “tracker team” (whatever that is)—the members of which weren’t in uniform, but in shorts and slippers, for heaven’s sake—to arrest Menorca. They found him on his way to the Court of Appeals. According to the MPD spokesperson, a decision was made “on the ground,” meaning at the point where they saw Menorca, to give priority to the arrest order rather than to the CA subpoena that Menorca was answering. That doesn’t compute. The decision to arrest couldn’t have been made on the ground, because Menorca was already on his way to the CA. Isn’t it more logical to conclude that the team was bent on preventing Menorca from reaching the court? Ergo, the decision must have been made beforehand.

3. More on the MPD: With all the arrest warrants being issued in Metro Manila, why were the warrants from Mindanao given priority, especially since the alleged crime was only libel—not a heinous crime—and there must be hundreds of warrants for crimes in the city that the MPD could have served?

4. Still talking about the MPD: Its story is that Mrs. Menorca (Seiko “Jinky” Otsuka) grabbed the badge and the arrest warrant from the serving officer, hid these in her car, and then came out to do battle. That shows tremendous presence of mind and calm ability to think on her feet. I saw the video (thank the Lord for cell phones), and noted that Mrs. Menorca is a slender, tiny woman compared to the arresting officer. How could she have gotten his badge and the arrest order, and so quickly? Why didn’t the others show their badges? The video showed her in hysterics (not calm), asking them again and again to show their badges, but no answer. And why, if they knew that the arrest warrant was in her car, were they unable to retrieve it?
Leila de Lima showed the strength of her character when she gave her statement regarding the Menorca arrest. Where other politicians have stayed absolutely quiet, no doubt because they are courting the INC vote, Leila unhesitatingly spoke her mind in complete disregard of what it might imply for her personal benefit. That’s what we need in the Senate. You have my vote, Leila...

Mareng Winnie: De Lima puts to shame politikos for being the lone voice in the wilderness against INC

Former Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Solita Monsod is praising senatorial bet Leila de Lima for standing up to the influential Iglesia Ni Cristo and calling a spade a spade when the former justice secretary condemned the arrest of sect member Lowell Menorca II.

“Leila de Lima showed the strength of her character when she gave her statement regarding the Menorca arrest. Where other politicians have stayed absolutely quiet, no doubt because they are courting the INC vote, Leila unhesitatingly spoke her mind in complete disregard of what it might imply for her personal benefit. That’s what we need in the Senate. You have my vote, Leila,” gushed Monsod in her Philippine Daily Inquirer column.

De Lima described Menorca’s arrest on 20 January 2016 as “really highly irregular and most probably illegal, too.”
She said the arresting officers should have been in uniform and not plainclothes and slippers and that they used excessive force not proportionate to the nonviolent crime slapped against Menorca.

The INC is widely suspected of engineering the dubious arrest warrant slapped on Menorca for libel. Menorca has accused the INC of illegal detention and harassment.

The INC has tagged Menorca as part of the group behind the malicious social media posts against INC Executive Minister Eduardo Manalo and his family. It was De Lima who initiated the cases filed against the INC leaders for illegal detention in August 2015.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Ang INC at ang Mafia!

Lowell Menorca II, ang palabang dating kaanib ng INC™ (Photo Source: Rappler)
Source: Bandera
Sinulat ni Ramon Tulfo

ANG Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) ay maihahambing sa Mafia ng America .

Pareho silang may mga galamay sa gobiyerno at sa ilang sektor ng lipunan.

Pareho silang kinatatakutan ng kanilang mga miyembro, at maging taga-labas, dahil sa kanilang taglay na kapangyarihan at impluwensiya.

Ang pagkakaiba lang ay ang INC ay isang relihiyon na itinatag sa ating bansa, na tinuturuan daw ang mga miyembro ng pagmamahal sa kapwa, samantalang ang Mafia ay isang criminal gang na pumapatay.

Pero pareho ang dalawa sa paraan upang sundin ng kanilang mga miyembro ang vow of silence: pinatatahimik habambuhay ang mga lumabag sa panata.

Since the Mafia is not operating in the Philippines , hayaan na natin ito at ipagpaubaya na natin ito sa mga otoridad sa America .

Pag-usapan natin ang INC.

Ipinakita ng simbahan ang pangil nito nang ipinag-utos nito ang pag-aresto kay Lowell Menorca II, isang itiniwalag na ministro, upang pigilin siyang makapagtestigo sa Court of Appeals.

Kasama ni Menorca ang kanyang asawa at 2-taong gulang na anak na babae patungo sa appellate court nang sila’y masabat ng ilang pulis na diumano’y mga miyembro ng INC.

Titestigo sana si Menorca sa Court of Appeals sa kanyang demanda laban sa mga lider ng simbahan na diumano’y nagbigay ng utos na siya’y dukutin noong isang taon.

Pilit na isinama ng mga pulis na miyembro ng INC si Menorca , na ministro noon sa Bulan, Sorsogon patungong Maynila.

Sinabi niya na ipinadukot siya ng mga matataas na opisyal ng INC dahil pinaghihinalaan nila na siya ang may kagagawan ng pagpapakalat ng diumano’y katiwalaan sa loob ng INC sa online posts.

Sa madaling salita, gusto siyang patahimikin.

Sinabi ni Menorca na sa daan patungong Maynila, pinagtangkaan siyang patayin ng mga pulis pero isa sa kanila ay naawa sa kanya.

Kinulong siya sa isang jail sa Cavite at inilipat siya sa INC central compound ng hindi niya kagustuhan bago nag-utos ang Supreme Court na siya’y pakawalan.

Ang tiyempo o timing at paraan ng pag-aresto kay Menorca noong Miyerkoles ay lantarang kawalan ng paggalang ng INC sa batas.

Alam ng simbahan na papunta si Menorca sa Court of Appeals upang tumestigo, pero inaresto siya dahil sa isang warrant sa isang maliit na kaso.

Inaresto si Menorca na para siyang pusakal na kriminal samantalang ang kaso ay libel, isang non-violent crime.

Sa aking karanasan bilang columnist na maraming kasong libel na isinampa sa akin, sinasabihan ako na may nakasampa na kasong libel sa akin at ako ay pumupunta sa korte.

Hindi naman heinous crime ang libel gaya ng murder, rape o kidnapping. May mga panukala nga na gawin na lang civil case ang libel at hindi criminal case.

Ang libel ay isinampa ng ilang miyembro ng INC kay Menorca sa Lanao del Norte at ang judge at agad na nag-isyu ng warrant laban sa kanya.

Walang subpoena na natanggap si Menorca galing sa piskal ng Lanao del Norte bago isinampa nito ang kaso sa korte.

Ibig sabihin, madalian ang pag-isyu ng warrant kay Menorca .

Ganoon ang kapangyarihan ng INC.

Maraming miyembro ng INC ang nakahawak ng makapangyarihang puwesto sa Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Prosecution Service, sa mga Regional Trial Courts, sa Court of Appeals at maging sa Supreme Court.

Utang nila ang kanilang puwesto sa kanilang simbahan.

May kumakalat na balita, na maaaring eksaherado, na ilang miyembro ng INC ay papatay upang ipagtanggol ang kanilang simbahan, gaya ng mga jihadists na handang pasabugin ang kanilang sarili para sa Islam.

Yan ay dahil sa matagal na indoctrination

Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

On his way to the court, ex-INC™ Minister was served "Warrant of Arrest" allegely behind is the Iglesia Ni Cristo®

Source: Rappler

Ex-INC minister Menorca arrested on the way to court

The arrest warrant stems from a libel case filed against Lowell Menorca in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte

UNDER ARREST. Ex-Iglesia ni Cristo minister Lowell Menorca remains in his vehicle as he awaits Manila Police District chief Rolando Nana following an arrest warrant served by two plainclothes policemen on January 20, 2016. Photo by Lito Boras / Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – Former Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) minister Lowell Menorca was arrested by plainclothes policemen in Manila on his way to the Court of Appeals on Wednesday, January 20.

Menorca, who was with wife Seiko, was on his way to court to testify on petitions for writs of habeas corpus and amparo filed by his relatives before the High Court in October 2015.

Interviewed by Ted Failon on radio dzMM, Menorca said he did not even receive any notice of his impending arrest, which stemmed from a libel case filed in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte.

The warrant was issued by acting presiding Judge Alberto Quinto of Regional Trial Court, 12th Judicial Region, Branch 12 in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte, on December 21, 2015. Bail was set at P10,000.

"Itong mga bagay na ito, hindi ako kayang kumbinsihin na walang kinalaman ang Iglesia ni Cristo (I cannot be convinced that the Iglesia ni Cristo has nothing to do with this)," said Menorca, who was allegedly detained by the INC last year to force him to expose members critical of the chuurch.

There was a nearly two-hour standoff at the corner of Roxas Boulevard and Quirino Avenue in Manila after two plainclothes policemen – one of them in short pants – attempted to serve the arrest warrant on Menorca.

His wife, Jinky, told Failon that the policemen, who did not even show them their badges to prove their identity, "grabbed" Menorca as soon as he got out of their vehicle to move to another vehicle. One of them even reportedly tore his shirt in the process.

Jinky, who documented the incident, said the police "flashed" an arrest warrant to them but did not let them read it in full.

In the video taken by Jinky, the policemen refused to show their badge to the couple despite their repeated demand, and just said Menorca was under arrest.

WARRANT OF ARREST. The warrant of arrest, dated December 21, 2015, issued by the Regional Trial Court in Kapatagan, Lanao del Norte. Photo by Katerina Francisco/Rappler

Previous abduction

In the radio interview, Menorca reminded police authorities he had a traumatic experience with their colleagues in the past – he had narrated he was detained by policemen in Sorsogon who filed trumped-up charges of illegal possession of explosives, which were eventually dismissed. (READ: INC Minister Lowell Menorca: The story of my kidnapping)

At the time of the interview, the number of policemen surrounding Menorca had swelled to 20, led by Superintendent Ed Leonardo, chief of Manila Police District Station 10.

"Susunod ako sa batas bagama't alam ko na ginagamit nila (INC leadership) ang batas para gipitin ang mga tao na katulad ko. Di ako lalaban. Napapaligiran ako. Gusto lang ng asawa ko, ligtas ako," Menorca said.

(I will follow the law, though I know that they [INC leadership] use the law to harass people like me. I won't fight. I'm already surrounded. My wife just wants to keep me safe.)

Isaias Samson, another former INC minister facing libel charges, earlier said that according to information that he had gathered, other libel cases have been filed against Menorca in different parts of the country, such as Isabela and Cavite, besides Marawi City. (READ: INC minister Isaias Samson: Life in danger)

Menorca said he did not know about these cases because "I have never received any notice."

Menorca requested, through the radio interview, that he be brought to the police station by Manila Police District Chief Senior Superintendent Rolando Nana himself. He didn't want to be handled by policemen who are members or affiliated by the INC.

Nana later heeded the request and escorted Menorca to Station 5, where he was booked and was expected to post bail.

INC spokesman: Face charges

INC spokesman Edwil Zabala said in the same interview that the INC had nothing to do with the arrest, and is not even aware of it. He said those who served the warrant would be in the best position to respond to questions arising from it.

"Itiniwalag na namin si Mr Menorca. Sapat na po 'yun sa panig ng Iglesia. That's the most that can be done as far as his membership in the church is concerned. Ngayon, kung meron siyang dapat na harapin na kaso, harapin po niya. Dapat harapin niya yun at 'wag niyang ibaling sa amin dahil hindi naman po ang organisasyon ng Iglesia ang gustong umaresto sa kanya," Zabala said. [sinungaling!]

(We already expelled Mr Menorca. That's enough on the part of the Iglesia. That's the most that can be done as far as his membership in the church is concerned. Now, if he has to face charges, then he should face them. He should face that and not drag us into it because the organization is not the implementing the arrest order.)

In response, Menorca said he understands the position taken by Zabala as he represents the INC and could not divulge any information unless authorized by the leadership.

"They will continue to deny all of those things. Sabi nila wala silang kinalaman sa arrest warrant, pagsasampa ng kaso sa iba't-ibang panig ng Pilipinas. Alam naman namin lahat na hindi kikilos ang isang kaanib ng organisasyon sa loob ng Iglesia na walang patnubay at pag-utos ng [nasa itaas)," he said. [sinungaling!]

(They say they have nothing to do with the arrest warrant, the filing of cases in different parts of the Philippines. We all know that members of the organization would not move without the guidance and order of the leadership.)

Preliminary investigation?

Menorca's lawyer, Trixie Cruz-Angeles, arrived past 10 am at the MPD Station 5, where Menorca was being held.

Angeles said they were surprised by the arrest, adding that they were not given any notice about the libel complaint against the former minister.

"Walang notice ang client namin, that's why even the fact na libel 'yung kaso, di namin alam. Normally, dadaan sa preliminary investigation. Walang notice ng preliminary investigation," she said.

(Our client did not receive any notice, that's why even the fact that it was a libel case, we did not know. Normally it goes through a preliminary investigation. There was no notice for a preliminary investigation.)

The lawyer added that Menorca's experience in Sorsogon, where he was allegedly abducted supposedly on orders of top INC officials, was always at the back of the family's mind.

Menorca and his family are seeking a writ of amparo to protect themselves, citing continued harassment and threats against them.

A writ of amparo is a remedy available to any person whose right to life, liberty and security has been violated or threatened. A writ of habeas corpus is a legal action sought on behalf of a person who has been unlawfully detained.

In an interview on dzMM on her way to Station 5, Angeles expressed confidence that the court would grant a request for Menorca to give his testimony on another day, if he would be unable to get to the CA for the scheduled hearing.

Asked what would happen if Menorca would not be able to make it to court, Angeles said: "We will ask the court for another setting, considering that this is a matter beyond our control. And we have no doubt that the court, which is a fair court, will grant it."

She added" "Right now, we have to make sure that he's safe. The reason why this case reached the Supreme Court is this is a case for habeas corpus and amparo precisely to protect him from the possibility that he may be harmed. And the people he had accused of attempting to harm him are agents of the law. So even the members of the police would understand this."

‘Inappropriate, questionable’

In Tuguegarao, Cagayan, former justice secretary Leila de Lima questioned how the police served the arrest warrant on Menorca. The senatorial aspirant told Rappler that policemen should be in uniform when they conduct such operations.

"It is questionable. First, are they really police officers, given that they are not in uniform? Second, if they are really police officers, it is very wrong to conduct an operation or you do your job as a police officer without wearing your uniform," she said in a mix of Filipino and English.

De Lima, who was in Tuguegarao on Wednesday for a forum with students of Cagayan State University, said the two policemen who tried to arrest Menorca violated their own operational guidelines in serving warrants of arrest against the accused.

"They should know that because when I was in the CHR (Commission on Human Rights), we helped the PNP (Philippine National Police) in crafting those operational guidelines,” the former CHR chair said.

She said the guidelines were crafted because of increasing complaints of police abuses in the country. – with reports from Katerina Francisco and Raymon Dullana/Rappler.com

Ex-Minister of the Iglesia Ni Cristo® arrested while on his way to the Court of Appeals. Behind the arrest believed to be the Iglesia Ni Cristo®!

Who else is interested to jail Menorca than the Iglesia Ni Cristo®? Who else was accused behind his illegal abduction in Sorsogon? Who else was behind in putting him to jail in Dasmariñas, Cavite from a false accusation by a false witness? Who else took him from Dasmariñas prison to Net25 owned and managed by the INC™ -- him, ratracting all allegations of abduction by alleged members of INC™ (SCAN)? Now that he is scheduled for a hearing for Writ of Amparo at the Court of Appeals, then the "Warrant of Arrest" was served, very timely. Ano 'yon, nagkataon lamang? At galing pa sa Mindanao ang kaso??? Then INC™ Spokesperson appeared on TV denying all the allegations that they (INC™) were behind the serving of warrant?! Kaya nilang magsinungaling ng harap-harapan?! Sinong pinaglololoko ng INC™!-CD2000

PNP to ask MPD to explain arrest of ex-Iglesia minister Menorca

The online news portal of TV5

Western Police District director Chief Superintendent Rolando Nana takes custody of former INC minister Lowell Menorca. (photo by Robert Amoroso, InterAksyon.com)
MANILA - (UPDATE 3 - 1:47 P.m.) Police arrested Wednesday morning former Iglesia ni Cristo minister Lowell Menorca II over a libel case filed the locally grown religious group.

In a radio interview, Menorca’s lawyer Trixie Angeles asked the police to bring Menorca to the Court of Appeals, where they have a scheduled hearing at 10 a.m.

Reacting to allegations that arresting officers may have gone against standard operating procedure, Philippine National Police spokesman Chief Superintendent Wilben Mayor said the Manila Police District will be ordered to explain how it carried out the arrest of Menorca.

“We will be asking the MPD to make an explanation on the arrest of the subject person,” Mayor told reporters at a press briefing in Camp Crame, adding that they have yet to receive the MPD’s report on the incident.

In August, Menorca’s colleague, also former INC minister Isaias Samson Jr. filed an illegal detention complaint against the religious group’s governing council called Sanggunian before the Department of Justice (DOJ). This ignited a five-day protest on EDSA by thousands of INC members, who invoked the separation of church and state under the Constitution.

The issue started July last year, on the eve of the religious group’s 101st founding anniversary when Angel Manalo, brother of executive minister Eduardo Manalo, and their mother Tenny Manalo posted a video on the Internet, asking for help. They said their lives were in danger and that some Iglesia ministers have been "illegally detained."

They also claimed there was corruption in the Iglesia.

The Manalo mother and son have since been expelled from group.

The Iglesia leadership denied the accusations.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Will our Church leaders just ignore this? All it does is add more fuel to the fire of the other misguided criticism that "Catholics" practice idolatry - something that, assuredly, had never been part of Catholic teaching and tradition. -Fr. Chito

Source: Fr. Chito Dimaranan

This is pastoral leadership sorely missing where it is needed most at this time. I have been saying all these years that the "devotion" to the Santo Nino will go the way of all misguided "popular devotions" that border more on the fanatical and the ridiculous.
Some of the statues that I see have nothing remotely related to the mystery of the Son of God becoming man, and assuming the humility and simplicity of a child in the Santo Nino image.

Increasingly, I see differing versions of the Santo Nino de la Suerte, Santo Nino de la Bolsa, Santo Nino holding a teddy bear, Santo Nino garbed in the color of money, or Santo Nino de Palaboy, holding a walking stick.

I love the mystery of God-become-man in Christ, including his image as a humble - if, helpless child.
But I think misguided shallow popular religiosity needs to be purified of the steadily encroaching showbiz culture, for one, and the pagan culture of "suerte" or luck, to name just two.

Will our Church leaders just ignore this? All it does is add more fuel to the fire of the other misguided criticism that "Catholics" practice idolatry - something that, assuredly, had never been part of Catholic teaching and tradition.

Oh, in case you are tempted to give me that traditional argument that popular religiosity has its "merits," please refrain from doing so, because I believe in it. But I also believe that if kept unguided and untaught, it is bound to ridiculous excesses and gross exaggerations.

Viva Senor Santo Nino! (But please don't give me the likes of that outrageous one holding a teddy bear and sporting oh-so-childish-and-cuddly apparel - and that one made to look like "Wonder Woman!"


Calling the kind attention of ARCHBISHOP SOCRATES VILLEGAS, President of the  CATHOLIC BISHOPS' CONFERENCE OF THE PHILIPPINES (CBCP) to issue a PASTORAL LETTER correcting these abuses concerning Catholic devotion to the Sto. Niño. -CD2000

Abused Sto Niño image, dressed as "Batman"

Abused Sto. Niño image dressed as "Superman"
MANDALUYONG City, Jan. 18, 2016 – A priest believes it’s time Church leaders take a firm stand against what he considers “misguided popular religiosity” among some Filipinos, specifically devotions to the Santo Niño (Holy Child), most of which he laments no longer bear the Good News of God-becoming-man.

“This is pastoral leadership sorely missing where it is needed most at this time. I have been saying all these years that the ‘devotion’ to the Santo Niño will go the way of all misguided ‘popular devotions’ that border more on the fanatical and the ridiculous,” notes Fr. Chito Dimaranan, rector of the Don Bosco Technical College (DBTC) Mandaluyong, in a social media post.


He shares some Santo Niño statues he sees have nothing remotely related to the Incarnation: of the “Son of God becoming man and assuming the humility and simplicity of a child.”

“Increasingly, I see differing versions of the Santo Niño de la Suerte, Santo Niño de la Bolsa, Santo Niño holding a teddy bear, Santo Niño garbed in the color of money, or Santo Niño de Palaboy holding a walking stick,” he says.

While Dimaranan affirms his love for the mystery of the Incarnation, with its image of a humble, helpless child, he points out “misguided shallow popular religiosity” needs to be purified of the steadily encroaching showbiz culture and the pagan culture of “suerte” or luck.


The priest, however, clarifies he is not against popular devotions per se, but only against its extreme forms.

According to him, if kept unguided and untaught, such practices are bound to “ridiculous excesses” and “gross exaggerations.”

“Will our Church leaders just ignore this? All it does is add more fuel to the fire of the other misguided criticism that ‘Catholics’ practice idolatry—something that, assuredly, had never been part of Catholic teaching and tradition,” he adds [emphasis mine]. (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)


Monday, January 18, 2016

Why Princess Charlene of Monaco Converted to Catholicism and How She Finds 'Spiritual Balance' in Church

Source: People.com

Princess Charlene of Monaco (PLS POOL/GETTY)
On Monday, Monaco's Prince Albert and Princess Charlene will travel to the Vatican for a visit, which will include an audience with Pope Francis.

The trip – a formal state visit between the world's two smallest countries – is actually no small matter.

Monaco's motto is "Deo Juvante" (With God's Help) and the historical alliance between Monaco (whose state religion is Catholicism) and the Vatican trace back centuries.

Considerable political, sociological and cultural ties exist between the two nations and these have become even more pronounced and important since the arrival of Princess Charlene.

And there's more than symbolism involved in the fact that Charlene's first state visit since the birth of her twins in December 2014 is to a nation even smaller than Monaco, which represents over one billion Roman Catholics.

Prince Albert and Princess Charlene with their twins, Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, on May 10, 2015.

Shortly before her July 2011 wedding, Charlene, 37, who was born and raised Protestant, converted to Roman-Catholicism "of her own free will and choice" in April of that year. In part because it was a question of succession and Grimaldi tradition she said last summer, but more because she found strength in it.

"Catholicism is the state religion [in Monaco]. But for me, it represents much more. The values of this religion profoundly touch me and correspond perfectly to my spirit

"In January 2013, Prince Albert took me to the Vatican to present me to Pope Benedict XVI, just as Prince Rainier did with Grace Kelly and Pius XII," she recalled, adding, "that experience was extremely intense and moving for me."

Just weeks later, the royal couple cut short a March visit to Palau in the South Pacific to attend the inaugural mass of Pope Francis. They both took communion from His Holiness on this occasion.

Monaco's Prince Albert and Princess Charlene with their twins, Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques

The birth of her children Jacques and Gabriella and her intense planning for their christening last May, deepened her faith, sources say.

Indeed, after her children's premature birth, her first authorized exit from the maternity ward at Princess Grace Hospital was to attend chapel mass. "I prayed, as always, for everyone," she told Paris-Match afterwards, "but I especially thanked the Lord. I have such luck, a happy husband, two children in good shape."

Charlene announced her devotion on several occasions in the months leading up to May's spectacular dual christening. On April 3, she was photographed on the palace balcony watching a religious procession, and she was instrumental in her brother Gareth Wittstock's conversion, which she and Prince Albert attended days later during Easter Mass.

And in a year of relatively few public appearances, she reemerged last November to speak at the Vatican on behalf of her foundation.

Charlene often attends mass discreetly with her husband (and recently with their children) at one of Monaco's five Roman Catholic churches. She also openly confides special appreciation for the peace of the country's Notre-Dame-Immaculate Cathedral, going there often privately to lay flowers for Prince Rainier, Albert's late father.

Charlene, a veteran Monaco observer says, "enjoys going to church. She likes it. In a sense, you feel that it provides a spiritual balance, that contrast to her life as a princess, which she seeks."

Albert, who has applauded Pope Francis' call for environmental responsibility, will be discussing and sharing some organic farming tips during next week's visit.

Sources tell PEOPLE that the prince will be bringing photographs and information concerning the techniques used at his 125-acre working farm, Roc Agel, which Francis is interested in implementing at the papal retreat, Castel Gandolfo.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Luther and the Protestant Reformation: Crash Course World History

Lottie Manalo to brother Eduardo: Why are you keeping us away? -Rappler

Source: Rappler

Echoing the calls of her brother, Angel, Lottie Manalo Hemedez appeals to their older brother, Eduardo, to talk to the family and end the controversy in the Iglesia ni Cristo

'TALK TO US.' Lottie Manalo-Hemedez appeals to her brother, INC leader Eduardo Manalo, to talk to the family and end the long-running controversy rocking the church. Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – For the first time since being expelled from the influential Iglesia ni Cristo (INC), Lottie Manalo Hemedez faced the media to appeal to her brother, INC executive minister Eduardo Manalo, to talk to his siblings and end the long-running controversy rocking the 101-year-old church.

"We want to talk to him to find out the cause of the disagreement between us. We want to know why he's angry at us. He hasn't given us a reason," Lottie said in a press conference on Friday, January 15.

Hemedez said she and her brother Angel still do not know why they were being harassed, deprived of their rights within the residence they claim as their own, and denied the opportunity to speak to their older brother.

Lottie, Angel, and Eduardo are among the 6 children of second Iglesia executive minister Eraño "Erdy" Manalo and Cristina "Tenny" Manalo. Eraño died in 2009, leaving his eldest son Eduardo in charge of the 2.25-million-strong church. (INFOGRAPHIC: The Manalos of the Iglesia ni Cristo)

It was after their father's death that things slowly started to change, Hemedez said. Within a few months, Eduardo began slowly distancing himself from the family, until they weren't able to talk to him at all.

"After my father passed away, nag-umpisa na unti-unti. Maraming mga bawal, hindi na kami pwedeng dumalaw ng Central. Kapag tinatanong namin bakit, ang laging sasabihin, "Atas ng pamamahala." Wala po kaming magagawa kundi sumunod kasi atas ng pamamahala, pero wala silang binibigay na reason," Lottie said.

(Everything slowly started to change when my father passed away. Suddenly there were a lot of things that were prohibited, we could not visit the Central Office. When we ask why, we were told it's upon orders of the leadership. We couldn't do anything but follow, but they didn't give us a reason why.)

"We asked countless times to be able to speak to our brother, but we were always turned away," she added.

In July 2015, Angel and his mother Tenny appeared in a YouTube video to appeal for help, claiming that their lives were in danger. Eduardo later expelled his own mother and siblings for exposing the supposed death threat and allegedly creating divisions within the church.

Since then, the siblings have cried harassment by the church's top leaders. Their residence at 36 Tandang Sora in Quezon City is now the subject of competing ownership claims, and electricity inside the compound has been cut off. A portalet and guardhouse blocked the driveway, and fences were put up.

While the INC leadership said these were security measures to protect themselves from unknown masked men seen entering the compound, the Manalo siblings claim these were forms of harassment designed to force them out of Tandang Sora.

No power struggle

It has been 5 years since Lottie last spoke with her elder brother. She said she was puzzled by Eduardo's silence and distance from them, saying that they used to be close and that he was a "kuya (older brother) in every sense of the word."

A few months before their father died, Eduardo even promised that he would take care of his siblings.

"'Pinatawag niya kaming lahat. Nakaidlip nang kaunti ang father ko, tapos sabi ng mother ko, na'ndito na si Eddie. And when my father saw him sabi niya, 'Huwag mong pababayaan ang mga kapatid mo.' And he promised that he would do that.... Sabi niya, kung ano ang aming kalagayan, ipagpapatuloy niya," Lottie said.

(My father called us all to him. He was sleeping at the time, and when Eduardo came, my mother woke him up. And when my father saw him, he said, 'Be there for your siblings.' And he promised that he would do that.... He said he would keep up our current living situation.)

What triggered the sudden change? Lottie said she still does not know the reason. She also denied that there was a power struggle, or challenges to Eduardo's leadership that supposedly arose after the death of their father.

Was Eduardo's wife and her sister-in-law, Lynn Ventura Manalo, a contributing factor? Lynn has been referred to as "Jezebel" by INC members critical of the goings-on inside the church.

Lottie recalled that her father had once told off Lynn, telling her not to "interfere" with the affairs of the church. Lottie, however, did not elaborate, adding that she has "no idea" if Lynn was responsible for the divisions within the church.

'As long as it takes'

Since their expulsion in July 2015, Lottie said she and her brother Angel have been enduring difficult living conditions. Fences have been put up around their residence, walling them in and forcing them to climb over them to be able to attend court hearings.

Even before their expulsion, Lottie said the family had been harassed and followed by unknown men. It was their concern for their safety, she said, that finally prompted them to speak out and appeal for help.

Despite the difficulties, Lottie is adamant: she would not leave 36 Tandang Sora, despite the INC's insistence that the property belongs to the religious organization.

Her camp earlier said she owns the title to the property, adding that the INC had falsified a deed of sale that supposedly transferred the lot to the church.

"Why should I leave? It's my house," she said.

Asked how long she can endure living in a walled-off property, with no electricity, Lottie replied: "As long as it takes." – Rappler.com




Complainant: LOLITA M. HEMEDEZ
#36 Tandang Sora Avenue, QC


#1 Central Avenue, New Era Quezon City

"Under the virtue of the authority vested in me by the Revised Charter of Quezon City and existing laws you are hereby commanded and REQUIRED to appear at the OFFICE OF THE CITY PROSECUTOR, 4th Floor, Hall of Justice Building (Bulwagan ng Katarungan) beside Quezon City Hall, Elliptical Road, Quezon City.

Room 428
January 27, 2016
2:00 PM

() Subscribe and Swear to your written statement on record;
() Submit (a) hotograph of your damaged vehicle or property with corresponding estimate of damage (b) medical certificate
() Submit to clarificatory questioning




Witness my hand this 6th day of January, 2016.


Assistant City Prosecutor


Thursday, January 14, 2016

Anglican Communion on the Brink of Formal Schism

Deep divides between member churches of the Anglican Communion, over homosexuality and other issues, could precipitate its breakup as early as this week.

by EDWARD PENTIN Posted in 01/11/2016 for National Catholic Register

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby
CANTERBURY, England — The Anglican Communion stands on the verge of formal schism this week, as its leaders began meeting Monday to discuss the issue of homosexuality and other matters in Canterbury, England.

The five-day meeting, called by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, is seen as a last-ditch attempt to keep the ecclesial community together following a long-running dispute over homosexuality and deeper differences over how Anglicans should interact with today’s largely secular, post-Christian society.

The global summit of 38 primates of the Anglican Communion, which claims to have 85 million followers worldwide, is usually held every two years, but it hasn’t convened since 2011, principally because of the dispute over homosexuality. This week’s meeting will also discuss other issues such as religious violence and climate change.

Since 2003, when Episcopalians (the American branch of Anglicanism) made an active homosexual bishop, divisions have deepened between largely Western Anglicans, who would like to see greater acceptance of homosexuals in the church, and those, mostly in Africa and Asia, who argue it is contrary to Scripture and 2,000 years of Christian teaching. Tensions increased last year when the Episcopal Church moved towards solemnizing same-sex “marriage.”

Pressure has also been building in the run-up to this week’s meeting with more than 100 Anglicans, including the dean of St Paul’s Cathedral in London, sending a letter to the archbishops of Canterbury and York urging repentance for treating homosexuals as “second-class citizens.”

“The time has come,” they wrote, for Anglicans to acknowledge that they have failed in their duty “to care for LGBTI members of the Body of Christ around the world.” The Anglican Communion, they added, needed to “apologize” for not “challenging ill-informed beliefs about LGBTI people.”

The signers of the letter said they understood there are “differing ways of interpreting the Scriptures” but urged the primates to be “prophetic” and “Christlike” in dealing with “our LGBTI sisters and brothers who have been ignored and even vilified for too long.”

The Anglican bishop of Oxford, the Rt. Rev. David Ison, even argued for change by seemingly equating those opposed to acceptance of homosexual practices with ISIS. “The sexuality divide focuses the big question facing the whole of humanity,” he told Christian Today. “How do we treat people who are different from us? The forces of Daesh (ISIS) in Syria seek to eradicate difference and make everyone else like them, through violence and the threat of death.”

Vocal Opposition

But other Anglican leaders have been equally vocal in their opposition to the move. As the Anglican Communion cannot excommunicate people or provinces, bishops in favor of Christian tradition have formed a group, the Global Anglican Future Conference (GAFCON), which is threatening to break away entirely unless “godly order” is restored.

Reports say Anglican archbishops from Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria, South Sudan, Rwanda and Congo will probably stage a walkout within a day or two of the inauguration of the summit. They are calling on British and U.S. prelates to publicly give up their support for same-sex “marriage” and actively homosexual bishops.

The Rt. Rev. Michael Nazir-Ali, the former Anglican bishop of Rochester, England, said he does not agree with the argument that there can be “different interpretations of Scripture” on the issue. “The Bible is clear on many things, including its teaching on human sexuality, and the Church has upheld that teaching for 2,000 years,” he said.

Of the 38 Anglican provinces, only eight are in favor of acceptance of same-sex unions: the U.S., Canada, Scotland, Wales, New Zealand, South India, South Africa and Brazil.

Since becoming archbishop of Canterbury in 2013, Welby has tried to keep some semblance of unity, most notably by appointing a Nigerian, Rev. Josiah Atkins Idowu-Fearon, general secretary of the Anglican Communion. Unity in the Episcopal Church has also been helped by having an African-American evangelical, the Rt. Rev. Michael Curry, as its presiding bishop since last November, although some do not believe his election will be of help. Furthermore, Welby has already said he thinks it might be a good idea to effectively dissolve the Anglican Communion and replace it with a much looser grouping.

Vatican Perspective

The Vatican, meanwhile, is watching events in Canterbury closely. It argues that, for dialogue between Rome and Canterbury to effectively continue, the Anglican Communion must stay as one, but it recognizes that its dispersed authority model makes that an almost impossible task. It is perplexed at Anglicans’ wish to allow local and regional bishops to decide on doctrinal matters without seemingly having a sense of what is owed to the communion as a whole, but recognizes that Welby is not, as he has said himself, an “Anglican pope.”

Some see the problems affecting the Anglican Communion as similar to those facing the Catholic Church and all Christian denominations. Father Ed Tomlinson of the Anglican Ordinariate of Tunbridge Wells in England has argued that what is dividing the body of Christ is a more fundamental issue than just homosexuality. Rather, he contends, it is being caused by “modernists” who have “lost their faith but do not wish to lose their Christian culture and identity.” The miracle that is needed, he believes, is for the Church to “wake from slumber, stand for truth and refute error.”
For Lord Christopher Monckton of Brenchley, author of Anglican Orders: Null and Void?, the only doctrine in the Church of England "is the doctrine that there is no doctrine."

He told the Register Jan. 11 that since Anglicans began "openly to defy" their belief in "even the sola Scriptura to which they once clung — for instance by manufacturing a homosexual 'bishop' in contravention of the biblical teaching that homosexuality is wrong because it is medically dangerous to its practitioners — they abandoned even scriptural doctrines and thereupon ceased to be a 'religion' in any recognizable sense."

He said that is why the churches in Africa, which still adhere to the scriptural doctrines, "no longer recognize Anglicanism as their own."

"The Anglican religion is no longer anything much to do either with England or with religion," he said. "It has a questionable past, an uneasy present and no future."

For now, the Vatican is hoping and praying that Welby can hold the Anglican Communion together, but if there were to be a definitive split, it would try to continue dialogue across the divisions, speaking to both parties if necessary.

Edward Pentin is the Register’s Rome correspondent.

My Blog List

My Calendar

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...