No one can assure that Duterte will go to hell or heaven. Who knows if he is really aspiring to go to heaven like every God believers do, hence he calls himself, Santo Rodrigo?
I know of a person who does not believe in saints. He is a member of a Christian denomination who believes that our prayers should be offered directly to God and not to channel them through the saints.
His faith should be respected. After all, freedom of religion is enshrined in our Constitution.
The faith of this person is shared by a number of people who belong to sects outside the Roman Catholic Church.
I heard this person attacking the Catholic Church for what he considers a wrong doctrine: believing in saints.
He even quoted the 10 commandments, saying that God is a jealous God.
He even ridiculed the images of saints in the Catholic Churches as made of wood and incapable of helping people.
However, when President Rodrigo Duterte cracked a joke as regards the saints last November 1 during a briefing he presided over in relation to Typhoon Rosita, this person reacted badly.
It seems that there is a 360 degrees turned around of his faith.
He now seems to be a defender of saints and he lambasted Duterte for his jokes about the saints.
I wish this person had converted to the Catholic faith prior to Duterte’s jokes; otherwise, there are two possibilities that happened to him.
First, he might be sincere enough of his conversion from a non-saint believer to an instant saint believer now.
Second, he just rides on the issue, just like those who are fault finders of the President, so he can attack him.
In the first case, Duterte was even made as an instrument so that this person would be converted to believe in saints.
In the second case, this person is also answerable for just riding on the issue by pretending to be saints defender, when, in truth, his main target is the President.
How many non-saint believers who just ride on the issue to attack the President?
How many of non-active Catholics seem to be like an active faith defender now in “defending” the saints and attacking Duterte?
I do not say that Duterte is correct in his jokes and in calling the saints drunkards and had vices.
I wish his advisers would advise him to be more circumspect next time in his jokes.
However, mature Catholics who really study the lives of the saints know that there are saints who were drunkards and had many vices prior to their conversion.
To mention a few, they are: Saint Augustine, Saint Constantine, and Saint Paul.
If Duterte’s joke refers to the lives of the saints prior to their conversion, then he is partly correct.
But if his joke refers to the time when they were already converted, then he is wrong.
But are we competent to read what is in Duterte’s mind?
In engaging in a discussion with regard to faith and salvation it is better to be non judgmental.
No one can assure that Duterte will go to hell or heaven.
Who knows if he is really aspiring to go to heaven like every God believers do, hence he calls himself, Santo Rodrigo?
The safest Cebuano comment is, “Di lang ta maghukom!”
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