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Good Governance Begins With Us
by the CFC International Council
February 19, 2008

Dear CFC brethren in Christ,

Our country is once again on the brink of a political upheaval.

Calls for the resignation of the President are increasing in tempo and crescendo.

Charges and countercharges fill the airwaves, Senate hearing rooms and even the streets.

The search for truth is on everybody’s lips. Rightly so, for the truth needs to come out so we can move on as a nation on more solid foundation. "So Jesus said to those who believed in him, 'If you obey my teaching, you are really my disciples, you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.'" John 8:31-32

We support the search for truth. There must be a sober effort to do so, with all those involved accorded due process and protection and given the opportunity to be heard freely without undue pressure or threat.

But we must also see beyond the clamor of the moment.

And realize that overcoming this monster, nay, the sins, of graft and corruption takes a sustained and all-out effort involving every Filipino’s participation and resolve.

Today, we invite attention to this aspect of our life and mission as CFC, on our response to the social dimension of the Gospel.

We thus support the call of our bishops to "pray together, reason together, decide together, act together towards a more vigorous work for good governance and a more active promotion of responsible citizenship in our society in the light of the Gospel and the social teachings of the Church."

While certainly there are institutions tasked with dealing with the urgent concerns of the day, we too, even individually, have a role to play. Good governance is not only the concern of government or our public officials. Good governance also includes our individual responsibility to help make our government institutions and public servants act in the manner that will best serve the common good. Good governance, indeed, begins with us, the citizenry.

The twin evils of poverty and graft and corruption are our greatest shame as a largely Christian nation. These twin evils are rampant in our land also because we as a people tolerate the same. Let us thus resolve to change and not continue to be part of the problem. Let us all be part of the solution.

Specifically, how do we respond to the current situation?

First, we ask all households to pray, reflect, and discuss the whole issue of good governance and responsible citizenship, including how to fight this menace that is graft and corruption, asking the Holy Spirit for guidance and strength. We suggest the following reflection question:

"What can I do as an individual, and together with others, to help stop graft and corruption and encourage good governance in this country?"

We ask that you share your insights and reflections with us. You may send your emails to the St. Thomas More & Associates (STMA) at <stma_global@yahoo.com>.

Secondly, we ask every member of the CFC family, whether in government or the private sector, to commit to the following:

  1. I shall not be a party to any bribery or other acts of graft and corruption.
  2. I shall be a watchdog and help bring to light any and all forms of corruption in both government and private offices.
  3. I shall exercise my right to vote by rejecting corrupt officials and helping bring to office deserving public servants.
  4. I shall help increase awareness on good governance issues among other family members and my circle of friends.
  5. I shall pray unceasingly for our government officials and our nation.

Thirdly, since in the meantime, the poor continue to suffer, and the poor will be the biggest victims in all political upheavals, we ask that we intensify our work for Total Christian Liberation.

Brothers and sisters, we have been given many chances to reform as a nation. But for the most part, we looked at this as a government responsibility alone. It is time to truly do our part. The appointed time is now. The time to reform our country, beginning with ourselves, begins anew today.

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