Bishop Gerardo Alminaza, head convenor of the Visayas Clergy Discernment Group (VCDG), in a Lenten Message, called on the Aquino Government to show its concern for the poor Filipinos by taking steps to address the unabated oil price increases.
Quoting Pope Benedict XVI’s Lenten message to be “concerned for each other, to stir a response in love and good works,” Bishop Alminaza said that “being concerned means being responsible for our brothers and sisters and not being indifferent to their plight.”
The priests and bishops of the VCDG said that in the Philippine society where many are hungry, jobless and homeless, the occurrence of the “unabated oil price increases result to the skyrocketing price of basic commodities, which in turn, add a heavier burden to our already suffering people.”
As Pope Benedict XVI exhorted in his Lenten message that Christians must not remain silent before evil, Bishop Alminaza said that we share in God’s work of salvation; therefore, we have to struggle untiringly for the total salvation of all.
Bishop Alminaza is concerned of reports that oil companies have overpriced the pump price of diesel by 8%-43%; and that the government is said to have benefited from the unregulated oil price increases as it earned revenues of P48 billion pesos annually or a total of P239.6 B in the last five years due to the 12% VAT on oil.
Quoting Pope Benedict XVI’s Caritas in Veritate, VCDG said that governments must safeguard and value the human person who is the source, the focus and the aim of all economic and social life.
VCDG is urging the Aquino Government “to manifest that it is indeed concerned with the well-being of the Filipino people by taking steps to alleviate their sufferings such as: regulating the oil industry so that oil companies will be stopped from overpricing the price of oil; removing the VAT on oil; and instituting price control over basic commodities.”
VCDG hopes that Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection inspire all people “to work for a transformed world: a new heaven and a new earth where all people enjoy the fullness of life, truth, justice and genuine peace.”
BISHOP GERARDO ALMINAZA, D.D.
Auxiliary Bishop of Jaro/ Head Convenor of the Visayas Clergy Discernment Group (VCDG)
Tel. No. (033) 3291625
VISAYAS CLERGY DISCERNMENT GROUP
E-Mail Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
March 20, 2012