MANILA, April 27, 2013— With only a few weeks left before the country’s midterm elections, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle reminded the faithful to be active and honest evangelizers of the Gospel and make governance and the exercise of democracy in the country bear the message of Christ.

In his talk at the Katolikong Pinoy recollection held at the San Carlos Seminary Layforce chapel last Saturday, he noted the importance of living by the teachings of the Church in achieving a well-governed society.

“Sana ngayong eleksyon hanggang pagkatapos ng eleksyon, ang governance at exercise of democracy sa ating bansa ay maging saksi na si Hesus—ang siyang buhay at daan sa Ama—ay makita at maranasan sa ating buhay,” Tagle added.

He said that progress can only be achieved in a society if change would start from individuals up to the larger units of the social order.

“Para ang pananampalataya ay ating maipahayag, simulan natin ito sa sarili, sa pamilya, sa trabaho, at sa ating mga pang araw-araw na pinagkakaabalahan,” he said.

Spiritual richness over earthly success

Noting the behavior of politicians who get enslaved by earthly success, Tagle emphasized that there is a great difference between worldly power acquired from mundane means and spiritual nourishment that comes from the Holy Spirit.

He said that people should not be affected by the blinding glimmer of earthly success as what really matters in the end is the power that springs from the Divine.

“Hindi maka-mundong kapangyarihan [ang importante] kung hindi kapangyarihan mula sa langit. At kapag dumating na iyon, hindi ka magiging pinakamalapit sa Panginoon in terms of worldly power. Kapag dumating ang kapangyarihan ng Espiritu Santo, ang papel mo ay isang saksi,” Tagle said.

Christ’s missionaries

The prelate also reminded the faithful to be active missionaries of the Church in light of the nearing celebration of Jesus Christ’s ascension to heaven.

Tagle said that the ascension, which occurs every 40 days after Christ’s resurrection, is the manifestation of the Lord’s undying presence on earth and the actualization of human salvation.

“The ascension of Jesus is not a separation from us. It is not the end or termination of His mission. Sa kanyang pag-akyat sa langit sa piling ng Ama, lalo siyang naging present sa atin,” he said. “Sa piling ng kanyang Ama, tuloy ang kanyang misyon, tuloy ang kanyang pagmamahal sa atin.”

He added that the period of ascension signifies the “descending of evangelizers” to the world, further reminding the faithful of their responsibility to act as missionaries of Christ.

“Yung pagkakasakatuparan ng ating pagiging misyonero ay ang patuloy na pananahan sa atin ni Hesus. Through us and in the power of the spirit, Jesus will continue preaching the word of God’s love,” the prelate said.

According to him, physical separation does not affect the connection between humans and the Divine as closeness with the Lord transcends all earthly boundaries.

“Kapag ikaw ay nasa piling ng Diyos, hindi ka malalayo sa piling ng kapwa. He who is present with God is fully present and is most present in the world and in history,” Tagle said.

The prelate added that the mystery of the life of Christ cleansed the sinfulness of humanity by giving hope towards possessing a renewed life.

“Tayong mga makasalanan ay kailangang isumpa. Salamat na lamang sa muling pagkabuhay ni Hesus at may pag-asa tayo,” he said. (Jennifer Orillaza)